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Learn a River’s Name Gallery Opening

January 25 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Learn a River’s Name is a group exhibition of seven projects, each deeply engaged  with regional waterways. Opening to the public on January 25, the artists in this exhibition (Camp Little Hope, Matthew Friday, Dylan Gauthier, Ana Berta Hernandez, Mare Liberum, Sandy Sorlien, and Danielle Toronyi) seek a profound connection through their work, asking how can art help us to know, value, and steward the rivers around us. Learn a River’s Name includes works that reveal something unseen about a water body’s characteristics. With a focus on the Mid-Atlantic region, these artists explore rivers and streams that we might ourselves get to know—the Schuylkill, Delaware, Brandywine, and Hudson Rivers.

In a 2017 New York Times op-ed, Akiko Busch writes, “Giving something a name is the first step in taking care of it.” As we think about of bodies of water, a name is an opening. The name is a prelude, a microcosm, a way to be known—a first step on the pathway to meaningful connections between people and nature.

Opening reception
January 25, 2017, 6-8pm
Light refreshments will be served
Curator and artist talks at 6:45pm

About the projects:

Camp Little Hope investigated the impact of sea-level rise on the Delaware River and neighboring communities during a residency at Glen Foerd on the Delaware. The result is a site-specific installation connecting sea-level rise data to Philadelphia neighborhoods.

Matthew Friday explores the dynamics of the Hudson River through public projects that cultivate environmental literacy and foster ecologically resilient systems. The result of these collaborations are mapped out in a series of diagrams and paintings produced using dye from watershed plants and dredged river mud as well as a mobile field station that includes a provisional library, microscope and other tools to study watersheds.

Dylan Gauthier explored the Brandywine River over the course of a year, collecting hours of video footage and developing alternative mapping presentations of the river, as well as writing and navigating a handbuilt boat along the river’s whole length.

Ana Berta Hernandez explores ecological trauma of both humans and nonhumans in areas where shale gas extraction is taking place, including the Marcellus Shale formation, located in the headwaters of the Delaware watershed.

Mare Liberum is an artist collective that gets people on the water through collaborative boat-building and explorations; the craft which was assembled for and paddled on the Schuylkill by Haverford students will be on view in the gallery. The punt was painted with tidal cycles and animal inhabitants of the river for this exhibition in collaboration with artist Chloe Wang, who was involved in the construction of the boat as a student and now works in River Programs at Bartram’s Garden.

Sandy Sorlien documented the remains of the 200-year old Schuylkill River navigation system through years of research, mapping, bushwhacking, and photography.

Danielle Toronyi’s Peak Discharge is a real-time sound piece created from USGS flow data for the Lower Schuylkill River, responding to changes in the river’s discharge levels and incorporating underwater sounds of the river itself.


January 25, 2018
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Event Categories:


Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education
215-482-7300, 110
8480 Hagy's Mill Road, Philadelphia, PA 19128 United States