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The Johnson Museum video installation “Vertigo Sea” takes the beauty and horror of the ocean as its subject.

Things to Do, Aug. 23-30, 2019

Choral Showcase

The Department of Music presents the Cornell University Chorus and Glee Club, under the direction of Robert Isaacs, in a Choral Showcase concert, Aug. 25 at 1 p.m. in Sage Chapel. Admission is free and open to everyone, especially new students and their families.

The university’s flagship touring ensembles will be joined by their a cappella subset groups, After Eight and the Hangovers. A reception follows the performance, with information about auditions for the choral ensembles.

The cruel sea

Artist John Akomfrah’s video installation “Vertigo Sea,” on view through Dec. 8 in the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art’s Bartels Gallery, portrays the ocean as a resilient and stunning life force – and a site of mass murder, political instability and unaccountability.

The work is part of “how the light gets in,” a museum-wide exhibition of contemporary art on global migration, opening Sept. 7.

Created for the 2015 Venice Biennale, the installation immerses viewers in a montage of spectacular images and sounds. Waves and wildlife imagery contrast with scenes of political violence and environmental destruction.

The work blends archival and original footage, from BBC nature documentaries to the dramatic landscapes (reminiscent of the romantic paintings of Caspar David Friedrich) of the Danish Faroe Islands, Scotland’s Isle of Skye and regions of northern Norway. Some graphic scenes document the brutal history of whaling while charting the intelligence and majesty of Earth’s largest mammal, using the narrative arcs of both Herman Melville’s “Moby Dick” (1851) and Heathcote Williams’ epic poem “Whale Nation”(1988). 

Cornell Cinema: All access

Cornell Cinema launches its fall season with free admission to all new students with ID, at screenings Aug. 26-30 in Willard Straight Theatre. Orientation to Cornell Cinema, a free program open to everyone Aug. 26 at 6:45 p.m., highlights one of the best campus film exhibition programs in the country with coming attractions trailers, short films, door prizes and free popcorn.

During Orientation Week, Cornell Cinema offers new students free admission to seven films, including “Howl’s Moving Castle.”

Films include Orson Welles’ classic “Citizen Kane,” Aug. 26 and 28, “Howl’s Moving Castle,” Aug. 27-28; “Booksmart,” Aug. 27 (also showing Aug. 31-Sept. 1) and Jordan Peele’s “Us,” Aug. 29 and 31.

The Texas borderlands adventure documentary “The River and the Wall” (2018), featuring alumna Heather Mackey ’10, makes its Ithaca premiere Aug. 29 (in conjunction with “how the light gets in” at the Johnson Museum).On Aug. 30, screenings of “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” (2018) in 3D and “Captain Marvel” (2019) are free to all Cornell students.

Cornell Cinema now offers an All-Access Pass, giving patrons admission to all regularly priced screenings for the entire academic year (more than 150 titles) for one price – $10 for graduate and professional students, $20 for all other students and $30 for community members (the public, faculty and staff). Some special events are not included, but prices may be discounted for pass holders. Passes are available for purchase online, at Cornell Cinema open houses Aug. 23-24, and at the box office before shows.

All screenings are open to the public. Regular single ticket prices are $9.50, $7.50 for senior citizens, $7 for students, and $5.50 for graduate students and children age 12 and under. Matinees before 6 p.m. are $7 general, $5.50 for students.

Bee concerned

A summer exhibit, on display through Sept. 30 in the Mann Library Gallery, highlights the crucial role of pollinators and the threats to their health and survival – including habitat loss, climate change, disease and pesticides.

Cornell entomologists contributed to “PolliNation,” a collaborative exhibition at Mann Library on pollinators and the threats they face.

“PolliNation: Artists Crossing Borders with Scientists to Explore the Value of Pollinator Health” features the results of a multiyear project by Cornell entomologists, scientists based in the United Kingdom, and Welsh artists. The work reveals and celebrates the beauty and the importance of pollinators, and how their fate is linked to the planet’s and our own.

The exhibit is a collaboration among Mann Library, the Department of Entomology and the University of Wales, Trinity St. David.

Also at Mann Library: “The Magic of Mushrooms,” in the second-floor gallery through Aug. 31; and “Unturned Leaves: Early Women in Botanical Illustration,” in the Mann Lobby and the Top Shelf Gallery through Sept. 30.

Gallery hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays, noon to 5 p.m. on weekends. Exhibits are open to the public.

Sustainability scavenger hunt

Cornell hosts its first-ever campuswide sustainability scavenger hunt during the first half of the fall semester, Aug. 23 to Oct. 12. Students, faculty and staff can compete for more than $600 in prizes.

The Sustainability GooseChase aims to foster sustainable behavior change and highlights the many ways to progress sustainability on campus. For incoming students in particular, the activity is a useful, comprehensive introduction to sustainability resources and culture at Cornell.

Any Cornellian can participate; download the free GooseChase app for mobile devices. Use the code YL8643 to join the Cornell mission, or search for “Sustainability GooseChase.” New missions to earn points will be added daily in the opening weeks and biweekly thereafter. Participants will need to use the app regularly to complete new missions.

The GooseChase is sponsored by the Campus Sustainability Office; follow Sustainable Cornell for GooseChase updates on social media.

Media Contact

Abby Butler