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Conversations about Landscape: Saltscapes

December 4

Conversations about Landscape: Saltscapes

Wednesday, December 4, 2013 • 6:30–8:30 p.m.

Location:  Exploratorium Pier 15, Bay Observatory Gallery

Admission:  This event has reached capacity. Please look for more Conversation Series programs in the new year.

Using a kite to fly a radio-controlled camera up to 300 feet above South Bay salt evaporation ponds, Cris Benton takes starkly beautiful aerial photographs that highlight one of the greatest landscape transformations underway in America. Join us for two unique perspectives on this landscape in transition. Benton will present his photographs of this otherworldly landscape, and sign copies of his newly released book, Saltscapes: The Kite Aerial Photography of Cris Benton. And restoration ecologist John Bourgeois will discuss the science and politics behind the massive South Bay Salt Pond Restoration Project, which is converting more than 15,000 acres of commercial salt ponds back into tidal marshes and mudflats.

Cris Benton is a retired UC Berkeley professor of architecture who began taking kite photographs of the South Bay salt ponds more than 10 years ago, while an Artist-in-Residence at the Exploratorium.

John Bourgeois is Executive Project Manager of the South Bay Salt Pond Restoration Project.

Co-sponsored by Heyday.


Conversations about Landscape brings together practitioners from the fields of geography, ecology, environmental arts and sciences, policy, and design to grapple with contemporary landscape questions. Speakers present their work and engage each other and the audience in conversation. The series is staged in the Exploratorium’s Bay Observatory Gallery, which explores environmental change in the Bay Area and beyond. An informal reception before each talk offers time to explore exhibits and engage with the speakers, Observatory staff, and other guests.

The series is funded by the Coastal Conservancy and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.

For more information about the Conversations about Landscape program, call (415) 528-4646.