By: Jesse Benitez
“There’s no issue that art can’t address.” – Don Russell, University Curator, Director of Provisions Research Center for Arts and Social Change
WGMU Radio’s General Manager, Jesse Benitez and Music Director, Bryan Childers, sat down and spoke with George Mason University’s Arts Curator, Don Russell, SIS Alumna and Element’s series organizer at Murals at Mason, Yassmin Salem, and musician and Arcadia designer, Sam Nester. The group discussed the process of creating and the inspiration behind Arcadia, a public artwork installation in which plants, art, music, and research come together to highlight the importance of cultivating a green consciousness.
What is Arcadia?
Arcadia is a public art installation launched in late 2020 on George Mason University’s Fairfax Campus, in which the music and sounds captured throughout the installation are created by plants. That’s right, you heard it, plants can be musicians! Using computerized software and sensors, the natural biorhythms of various Virginia-Native plants are rendered into a flow of dynamic music and light. The goal of Arcadia is to promote mindfulness, self care, and connection to nature while encouraging research. Arcadia serves as a research platform here at Mason in which students and faculty can perform work ranging anywhere from music composition to wellbeing, and/or environmental sustainability.
Listen to our Interview HERE: https://soundcloud.com/wgmu/arcadia-interview
Arcadia is located in President’s Park Hydroponic Greenhouse and is also streaming live 24/7 via Twitch: http://twitch.tv/masonarcadia