Through a multi-part art series featuring Indiana fungi and climate change, ERI Research Fellow Maria Whiteman explored the relationships between fungi, our bodies, and other organisms in the natural ecosystem.
The artwork was motivated by the desire to foster a greater understanding of the role fungi plays in a rapidly changing climate and strove to provide a new appreciation of our planet’s “deep, shared ecology” by examining the complex, interspecies relationships between life, death, and decomposition. The work contained and used fungi as part of the conceptual link, resulting in a living artwork that integrates fungi as the building material and alludes to the multifaceted potential fungi have in our environment.
Her “Picturing Indiana Biodiversity” exhibition in Fall 2020 was curated by IU Grunwald Gallery of Art Director Betsy Stirratt and IU Distinguished Professor of Biology Roger Hangarter. It was the first Grunwald exhibit addressing contemporary issues that contribute to biodiversity in the state of Indiana.
BioFungiArt demonstrated the various multitudes in which Whiteman can form and implement visually engaging art, illustrating the properties of fungi and our interconnectedness to the ecology and biodiversity of the mycelia world. The works also represent a melding of science and art.
Updated June 8, 2022