How can contemporary art show us new ways to better view and understand animal life?
Dr. Steve Baker will answer that question on Thursday, March 23, when he presents “The Disorderly Animal in Contemporary Art,” continuing Eastern Kentucky University’s Chautauqua lecture series “Order and Chaos.” His lecture, free and open to the public, will begin at 7:30 p.m. in O’Donnell Hall of the Whitlock Building.
Baker, a professor emeritus of art history at the University of Central Lancashire in England, is a seminal figure in the field of animal studies. Of his several published works on the subject, his most recent is the 2013 book “ARTIST|ANIMAL,” praised by prominent American artist Mark Dion for demonstrating a “deep understanding of the nuance, intricacy, and contradictions in how artists work today.” Other noteworthy publications of his include “The Postmodern Animal” and “Picturing the Beast: Animals, Identity, and Representation.”
Despite his retirement in 2008, Baker has continued his work in animal studies, contributing chapters of writing to major edited collections in the field. Other work includes dozens of scholarly articles and scores of public talks given since 2000, including conference keynotes in Great Britain, the United States, Europe and Australia. His lecture at Eastern will serve as the keynote address of the third biennial Living with Animals Conference.
Along with his work in art history, Baker has also enjoyed success as an artist. Since 2010, Baker’s artwork has been displayed in two European museums and in group exhibitions worldwide.
The Baker lecture is sponsored by the animal studies program, Department of Psychology and EKU Honors.