by Ellen Goldbaum
Courtesy the UB Reporter

Whether you’re a total non-science person or the next Einstein, the Science and Art Cabaret was made for you. This is science as never seen before.

The first Science and Art Cabaret, sponsored by UB and Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center, will be held from 7-9 p.m. October 20 in the Ninth Ward in Babeville’s Asbury Hall, 341 Delaware Ave., Buffalo.

Admission is free and open to the public; a cash bar will be available.

“It’s an entertaining mash-up of cutting-edge science and technology, with art, music, poetry and performance,” says Will Kinney, UB cosmologist, associate professor of physics and cabaret organizer.

The topic will be “Taking Nature Apart,” and UB’s scientists and artists will be weighing in.

The Science and Art Cabaret is part of the Café Scientifique movement that has swept the U.S. and Europe.

Now, Buffalo has its own place for artists and scientists to connect, created by UB physicists and visual artists who have collaborated on such successes as the UB Physics and Arts Summer Institute and the permanent “Physics and Arts Exhibition” in Fronczak Hall on the North Campus.

“Order a drink at the bar and hear top university researchers discuss their work in context with creative minds from the arts and humanities,” Kinney explains. “We pick a topic and look at it from all angles.

“Physicists, biologists, musicians and poets will riff on reductionism, that peculiar scientific notion of learning about the world by breaking it into component parts,” he says. “What do we learn by taking an organism apart? What do we learn by taking matter itself apart? What don’t we learn? Should we feel alienated or illuminated by the creative destruction of scientific inquiry?”

In addition to Kinney, the panel includes College of Arts and Sciences faculty members Ulrich Baur, particle physicist and professor of physics; Katharina Dittmar de la Cruz, assistant professor of biological sciences; and Gary Nickard, clinical assistant professor of visual studies.

Local artist Patty Wallace will do a reading, and live music will be provided by The Vores (unplugged), Buffalo’s late ’70s alternative band whose music is described as punk rock and surfer, and which features UB artists Nickard and Biff (Kenneth) Henrich, and UB grant writer Catherine Carfagna.

To provide the critical connection to the world of quarks and questions about our place in the universe, particle physicist and UB assistant professor of physics Avto Kharchilava will host a live video link to the control room at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory.

For more information, contact Nickard at 645-0529 or Kinney at 645-2017, ext. 111.