Literature & Poetry
The May at the Museum series is co-hosted by Friends of Crook County Library and the Crook County Historical Society/Bowman Museum.
Thursday May 1
Dynamic Geology of Oregon
Presented by Scott Burns, retired professor of geology, Portland State University
Oregon has a rich geologic history. Dr. Scott Burns, retired professor of geology at Portland State University, will take you around the state showing the different provinces, how they were formed and how they are all related in a dynamic presentation. Burns is a native Oregonian with a long family history in the Willamette Valley. His love for the state and our geology shines through the story he tells.
Thursday May 15
Archaeology and Science at the Paisley Caves
Presented by Dennis Jenkins, Ph.D., RPA, Oregon State Museum of Anthropology/Museum of Natural and Cultural History, University of Oregon
Luther Cressman’s 1938-40 excavations at the Paisley Caves in south Central Oregon discovered exciting evidence suggesting that people may have lived there as early as the Late Pleistocene, some 12,000 to 15,000 years ago. However, it was not until recent developments in ancient DNA testing that he was proven correct. This colorful slide show takes the audience through the scientific processes employed in proving the case for pre-Clovis human occupations at the world famous Paisley Caves. Cressman is a research archaeologist and the director of the university’s Northern Great Basin Field School.
Bowman Museum, 246 N Main Street, Prineville, 541-447-3715, www.bowmanmuseum.org.
Loretta Slepikas, about to turn 70, planned a pilgrimage in Spain to walk 240 miles of the Camino de Santiago, an ancient pilgrimage that is over a thousand years old.“What I learned while walking the Camino was totally unexpected,” says Slepikas. Learn more about her pilgrimage at the East Bend and Sisters Libraries as part of the Know Go series throughout the month of March. Both presentations are free and open to the public.
According to Slepikas, pilgrimages are a way to get away from the daily routine life demands. “Since they involve walking, thinking and believing, pilgrimages have always been used as a sort of meditation on the move,” says Slepikas. “The ritual and repetitiveness of walking long miles clears the mind from daily tasks and forces pilgrims to deal with a more simple way of life.”
El Camino de Santiago was one of the most important Christian pilgrimages during medieval times. At the end of the trail pilgrims find themselves at the site where the body of St. James the Apostle is believed to be buried. “I may have thought the Camino was a time for solitude and reflection but it had something else in mind for me.”
During her presentation, Slepikas, who is also a photographer, will present slides and share stories from her experience on the Camino. She will bring the pack she carried, filled with the items from her journey. She will also share tips on the practical side of a planning a pilgrimage.
March 6, 6pm, East Bend Library and March 19, 12pm, Sisters Library. www.deschuteslibrary.org.
Irene Hardwicke Olivieri’s enchanting, idiosyncratic and curiously complex artworks explore the subterranean aspects of life, love and relationships, secrets and obsessions – all the while opening a window to what she calls the “mysterious workshop of nature.”
Olivieri is infinitely inspired by the natural world, and her intricate paintings are laced with knowledge of the cougars, wood rats, caterpillars and other animal familiars she relates to. The artist is physically and emotionally exposed in many of her autobiographical paintings, but neither humans nor animals are simple portraits under Olivieri’s brush: her works explore the wildness within and without.
Author Carl Little’s introductory essay highlights the artist’s background and delves into her processes, motivations and revelations. Olivieri’s brief stories offer the inspirations and ideas behind her paintings, drawings and mosaics. Inset miniature vignettes and painted text invite close study. Interwoven natural history writings, folk wisdom, journal entries and excerpts from family letters open a door into the artist’s extraordinary world, drawing the reader ever closer to wildness.
Olivieri was born and raised in southern Texas. She studied art in Brazil, Mexico and Texas before earning her masters degree from New York University. While living in New York, she worked as a gardener and lecturer at The Cloisters and at The New York Botanical Garden, creating drawings of neotropical palms and the insects that pollinate them. She now lives off the grid in the high desert of Central Oregon, where she raises caterpillars, water lilies and succulents and keeps a dermestid beetle colony.
See Olivieri’s work at the University of Oregon’s Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art in Eugene, April 1-August 3. www.irenehardwickeolivieri.com/book-closertowildness.