Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Artist Basia Irland at Wade in the Water

Hello, Blogosphere! Seeing as this is my first post for the Colorado Art Ranch blog, let me introduce myself. My name is Samantha, and I’m the new PR and Marketing Intern here at the Ranch. I’m so excited to be a part of this great non-profit. I grew up in Steamboat, so rural Colorado has a special place in my city-girl heart. I can’t wait to attend our upcoming Artposium, Wade in the Water, in Salida. Mark your calendars for a great, artsy time: May 21st-23rd.

If you’ve been following our blog and our goings on, you already know a little bit about Wade in the Water. But here’s a quick recap for those just now visiting. Wade in the Water will be a weekend of water-themed disscussions, workshops and lectures held in the lovely town of Salida, named one of Outside Magazine’s “Dream Towns & Adventure Hideouts.” Exciting guest speakers will entertain and enthrall and we’ll get a fresh look at the way we see, use, enjoy, and control our water.

“Water and Eco Artist” Basia Irland is one of our featured guest speakers. Irland is Professor Emerita at University of New Mexico, and one of the world’s foremost water-based artist-activist-thinkers. She’s a sculptor and installation artist, a poet and book artist, and an activist in water issues. Her efforts include building rainwater-harvesting systems, community building along river corridors, and creating “ice books” embedded with seeds to foster plant growth along rivers.

What most excites me about Irland are her otherworldly ice books. They are stunning in a simple, elegant way. Water is a beautiful medium, and Irland proves her ability to harness it with these “books” that look like they’re made of glass, with “text” written through seeds. Besides their natural beauty, they serve a functional purpose (and in my opinion art that is functional AND beautiful gets extra points): as the book melts in the river, the seeds float away, distributing themselves downstream and along the banks. Irland says on her website, “I work with stream ecologists, biologists, and botanists to ascertain the best seeds for each specific riparian zone. When the plants regenerate and grow along the bank, they help sequester carbon, hold the banks in place, and provide shelter for riverside creatures.”

Can’t wait to hear more from Basia Irland at Wade in the Water. Check out her website at Register for the event at, or Follow our blog and receive a discount on registration…just use the coupon code “blog” at checkout. See you there!


Join the Colorado Art Ranch mailing list here: