Wednesday, March 26, 2014

"Battle for Bats" at the USFWS Environmental Film Festival

A friend alerted me to this short documentary about White Nose Syndrome, a fungal infection that is killing off a large part of the US bat population. It's currently screening at the Environmental Film Festival in Washington, DC:

The Battle for Bats: Surviving White Nose Syndrome

From the film's vimeo page:
"Battle For Bats: Surviving White Nose Syndrome was produced for the USDA Forest Service by Ravenswood Media. It shows how government and private agencies have come together to search for solutions to help our bat populations overcome WNS. The public can also play a role in the future of bats by providing habitat and surveying their populations. Bats are a critical component in a healthy forest ecosystem, plus they provide significant agricultural pest control and pollination. Their survival is essential for a sustainable natural environment."

A few years ago I created an installation about WNS, entitled hibernaculum. I've been following the progress of the disease since hearing about it in 2008 at the Chautauqua Institute. Glad to see people are still working to raise awareness of this environmental crisis!

hibernaculum at Fe Gallery, 2011

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Address Book Bestiary's public debut

A few friends have asked me if I have plans to show my Address Book Bestiary, which I completed a few months ago:

I'm happy to report that it was accepted into the Juried Visual Art Exhibition at Pittsburgh's annual Three Rivers Arts Festival, so if you are in Pittsburgh, you have the chance to see it in person and play with the cool mechanical contraption on its side. The public opening is Friday June 7th from 5pm to 7pm at the Trust Education Arts Center, 505/508 Liberty Ave. Hope to see you there!

Monday, March 17, 2014 is live

I'm happy to announce that I have a new website:

Maria Mangano

It will serve as my online portfolio, so if you want to look at a gallery of my finished work, read my resume, or show someone pictures of my pieces, it's perfect for that. I'll still be writing here about my thoughts and process, so keep checking back here for a "behind-the-scenes" look at what goes into my art.

Monday, March 10, 2014

New work for 2014 and upcoming exhibitions

I am very happy to share that I will be showing my Locusts installation next month for the opening of Wild Things at Sweetwater Center for the Arts in Sewickley, PA. There will be an opening reception on Friday, April 4 at 6pm.

I'm also in an upcoming show this summer at S P A C E Gallery about the concept of pattern, curated by Kristen Kovak. I have been working with the theme of window-collision fatalities in birds that live in and migrate through cities and will be expanding on these concepts in this show. Below is a shot of some kinglets:

The idea of exploring window collisions actually started years ago, when I began finding birds that had died or been injured by flying into the glass entryway at my job. Like all dead birds, they seemed tragic and beautiful, and the deaths mysterious and senseless until I read more about why birds don't see glass and windows the same way people do. (If you are interested, FLAP, or the Fatal Light Awareness Project, has a lot of good information.) I had amassed a "collection" of photos of these casualties and produced a large-scale drawing this year as a way of cataloguing their passings and exploring the analogies to misperceptions and tragedies in our own human lives.

The birds are painted with a combination of gouache, watercolor, ink, and graphite, and the finished drawing is roughly 30 by 40 inches.