Crystalized urine from an artist who drank from the Yangtze River for 21 days. Photos for which an artist placed herself in danger to depict the ocean’s turbulence. Contemporary interpretations of the bends of the Kansas River.
All come together in “Conversation XIV: Water,” a new exhibition opening Saturday at the Spencer Museum of Art, 1301 Mississippi St.
The exhibit features 20th- and 21st-century works — most are recent acquisitions — from the Spencer’s permanent collection. According to the Spencer’s description, many works take an eco-critical approach to water, exploring issues of pollution and scarcity, while others depict it more symbolically, as a cleansing or destructive force.
Throughout the exhibition, the Spencer will promote literary and cinematic works that explore the symbolic and physical powers of water.
Two upcoming conferences at Kansas University prompted the Spencer to create the exhibit. The Environmental Studies Program’s “Global Water: Drought, Conservation and Security in the 21st Century” is scheduled for April 12-13. The Association for the Study of Literature and the Environment’s “Changing Nature: Migrations, Energies, Limits” is scheduled for May 28 through June 1.