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Critics Choice

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Lecture: Farmers, food justice and the agrarian question
Monday, January 26 | 4-5 p.m. | Morgan Lounge Morgan Hall

Farm cropsHunger and obesity sit side by side in the world today because a food system dominated by money, markets and profits allows those with money to obtain above and beyond their needs while those without cannot get the fundamentals of life. The result is a growing polarization of global agriculture, between a small number of haves and an ever-increasing number of have-nots. In his book, Hungry for Change, economist Haroon Akram-Lodhi explains how capitalism was introduced into farming and how it transformed the terms and conditions by which farmers produce food. Building on the idea of food sovereignty, Akram-Lodhi develops a set of additional solutions to resolve the current crisis of the world food system.

Colloquium: What is a work of art in the age of $120,000 art degrees?
Monday, January 26 | 7:30-9 p.m. | David Brower Center, 2159 Allston Way, Berkeley

Sculpture by Caroline WoolardOften legitimized by its relationship to elite institutions of higher education, a work of art in the United States today is a product of the classroom, the loan repayment, the lecture-hall, and the homework assignment. But before the 1950s, becoming an artist had nothing to do with a BFA or an MFA. As Mark McGurl points out in The Program Era, what is novel about our time is not that it’s hard to make a living as an artist (that has always been the case), but that so many young people go to school, and often to expensive art schools, to try to become artists. What are the implications of debt, duration, and precarity on culture in the 21st century?

Film: Meerkats in 3D
September 20, 2014 – February 6, 2015 every day | 10:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. | Lawrence Hall of Science

MeerkatsFilmed over the course of a year, Meerkats 3D follows an extraordinary—not to mention adorable—family that stands just 12 inches tall. Discover how these tiny but strong creatures survive in the harsh desert, led by the family’s tenacious matriarch, Klinky. Together, this family of 20 will battle a rival gang to protect their territory, their pups, and their very lives. The Lawrence Hall of Science's National Geographic 3D Theater plays Meerkats 3D daily.

Exhibit: Following in Bartrams' Footsteps
December 15, 2014 – February 15, 2015 every day with exceptions | 10 a.m.-4 p.m. | UC Botanical Garden

Bartram botanical paintingThis major art exhibition includes forty-four original artworks based on the native plant discoveries made by John and William Bartram in their renowned and influential travels throughout the eastern wilderness between the 1730s and 1790s. The UC Botanical Garden will be the only West Coast showing of the exhibition.

Botanical garden: Plants illustrated exhibition
January 7 – February 15, 2015 every day with exceptions | 10 a.m.-4 p.m. | UC Botanical Garden

Ferns in the gardenView the 6th annual Plants Illustrated exhibition of botanical art featuring work by the Northern California Society of Botanical Artists. This year the pieces will represent plants in the Garden's collection. Free with garden Admission.

Exhibit: California, Captured on Canvas
October 8, 2014 – March 6, 2015 every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday & Friday | Bancroft Library

This exhibit portrays California both as a vast landscape of mountains, ocean, and forests and as an intimate home for vastly different inhabitants. Scenes of Yosemite and the Gold Rush are displayed, along with more recent work such as colorful paintings by John Sackas of the Golden Gate Produce Market. Also featured are Augustus John’s vibrant portrait of San Francisco’s tennis champion Helen Wills, and an imposing painting by Charles Grant of the Great White Fleet entering the Golden Gate on May 5th 1908. The exhibit conveys the variety of artistic prisms through which the Golden State has been captured on canvas.

Course: The rise and future of the food movement
January 26 – April 27, 2015 every Monday with exceptions | 6:30-8:30 p.m. | Live streaming

Mark BittmanA UC Berkeley course with live streaming open to the public.

The food system is multi-disciplinary and complex, involving agroecology, agronomy, anthropology, economics, nutrition, sociology, and the arts. In this course, experts on organic agriculture, school lunch reform, food safety, hunger and food security, farm bill reform, farm-to-school efforts, urban agriculture, food sovereignty, and local food economies will offer perspectives making the food system more sustainable and equitable. Instructor: Garrison Sposito; co-hosts: food writer Mark Bittma and poet Robert Hass.

TuesdayBack to top

Film: Nanook of the North
Tuesday, January 27 | 7 p.m. | PFA Theater

Still image from Nanook of the NorthWhen Robert Flaherty made Nanook of the North more than ninety years ago, he opened the eyes of viewers to a new use for the big screen, and, though enacted, paved the way for the development of the film documentary. In Nanook, Flaherty directed a group of Inuit—among whom he had lived for some time as a mineralogist—going about their daily activities for his camera. The resulting saga of constant struggle against harsh elements, contrasted with the intimate warmth of a small family, remains one of the most beautiful films ever made. Nanook of the North was a worldwide success on its release, adding irony to the tragic fate of its hero, Nanook, who died shortly after the film's release.

 $5.50 BAM/PFA members; UC Berkeley students,  $6.50 UC Berkeley faculty, staff, and retirees; Non-UC Berkeley students; Senior citizens (65 & over); Disabled persons; Youth (17 & under),  $9.50 General Admission
Buy tickets online, or by calling 510-642-5249.

Lecture: Goldie Blumenstyk on American higher education in crisis
Tuesday, January 27 | 4-6 p.m. | Heyns Room Faculty Club

Book Jacket for American Higher Ed in CrisisIs American higher education in crisis? Disinvestment by states has driven up tuition prices; students and their families worry increasingly about debt. Some are questioning the worth of a college education, even as study after study shows how important it is to economic and social mobility. Goldie Blumenstyk , journalist and author of American Higher Education in Crisis? What Everyone Needs to Know, will discuss current forces and trends in higher education and will speculate about some of the ways American colleges and universities will be reshaped in the years to come.

Lecture: Prospects for the future of Afghanistan
Tuesday, January 27 | 4-5:30 p.m. | 223 Moses Hall

Book jacket for War Comes to GarmserAlthough US combat operations in Afghanistan have formally ended, the US continues to have significant foreign policy responsibilities in the region. Dr. Carter Malkasian, author of , War Comes to Garmser, will discuss the future of Afghanistan and US regional policy at this important time. He was most recently the political advisor to General Joseph F. Dunford, commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan from May 2013 to August 2014. Before that, he directed the office of overseas operations within the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations, where he oversaw U.S. civilians deployed in Afghanistan, South Asia, and Southeast Asia.

Exhibit: The Secret Language of Flowers
January 27 – June 26, 2015 every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday & Friday | 11 a.m.-4 p.m. | Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life (2121 Allston Way)

Botanical drawingIn 1984, The Magnes acquired a portfolio of botanical drawings by Shmuel (Samuel) Lerner, a Ukraine-born amateur artist from California. While Lerner’s biography and many details surrounding this work remain obscure, today his drawings open for us a unique window into the landscape, the history and the languages of Israel in the period immediately following the establishment of the State. The exhibition features a selection of 26 botanical drawings from 1949, complete with the author's annotations about plants, places, and language.

WednesdayBack to top

Lecture: Sheila Kennedy on the Portable Light Project
Wednesday, January 28 | 6:30-7:30 p.m. | 112 Wurster Hall

Building designed by Sheila KennedySheila Kennedy, principal architect at Kennedy & Violich, will discuss soft infrastructure including her work on the Portable Light Project—a MATx non-profit design, research and engineering initiative that builds upon the skill sets of women makers in the developing world by integrating clean energy and lighting with textile craft traditions.

Lecture: A decade at Saturn
Wednesday, January 28 | 5 p.m. | Sibley Auditorium, Bechtel Engineering Center

Carolyn PorcoA glistening spaceship, with seven lonely years and billions of miles behind it, glides into orbit around a softly-hued, ringed planet. A flying-saucer shaped machine descends through a hazy atmosphere and lands on the surface of an alien moon, ten times farther from the Sun than the Earth. Fantastic though they seem, these visions are not a dream. For seven years, the Cassini spacecraft and its Huygens probe traveled invisible interplanetary roads to the place we call Saturn. Their successful entry into orbit in the summer of 2004, the mythic landing of Huygens on the cold, dark equatorial plains of Titan, and Cassini’s subsequent decade-long exploration of the Saturnian environment have become the stuff of legends. What they have shown us, and the images they have collected, are being closely examined in the pursuit of invaluable scientific insights on the nature of this very remote planetary system. Dr. Carolyn Porco of the Cassini Science team will discuss the findings.

Film: Battleship Potemkin
Wednesday, January 28 | 3:10 p.m. | PFA Theater

Still image from Battleship PotemkinInstructed to make a film to commemorate the 1905 revolution, Sergei Eisenstein chose to base his script on the mutiny on the battleship Potemkin of the Black Sea Fleet and the ensuing involvement of the people of Odessa. The sailors’ revolt against being served maggoty meat is both premise and metaphor for a tale told virtually entirely through images and their rhythmic juxtaposition and repetition, the purest cinema imaginable; the massacre on the Odessa steps is justifiably one of the most celebrated sequences in film history. Live music accompaniment by Judith Rosenberg.

 $5.50 UC Berkeley students,  $7.50 BAM/PFA Members,  $8.50 Seniors; Disabled persons; UC Berkeley faculty and staff; Non-UC Berkeley students; Youth 17 and under,  $11.50 General Admission
Buy tickets by calling 510-642-5249.

Film: African Film Festival 2015, short films
Wednesday, January 28 | 7 p.m. | PFA Theater

Every year, the African Film Festival features the voices of emerging artists from the African diaspora. In this year's selection of short narratives by women, Cameroon filmmaker Eka Christa Assam takes a quirky look at gender roles in Beleh, her short film centered on a disgruntled married couple. The Tanzanian-American filmmaker Ekwa Msangi-Omari grew up in Kenya, and lives in New York. Her short The Market King chronicles the travails of a father who takes his daughter to get her hair braided. In Tunisian director Kaouther Ben Hania's humorous recent film, a young girl goes to great lengths to avoid Koran school.

 $5.50 BAM/PFA members; UC Berkeley students,  $6.50 UC Berkeley faculty, staff, and retirees; Non-UC Berkeley students; Senior citizens (65 & over); Disabled persons; Youth (17 & under),  $9.50 General Admission
Buy tickets online, or by calling 510-642-5249.

ThursdayBack to top

Film: The Throwaways
Thursday, January 29 | 6 p.m. | Home Room International House

Promotional image for The ThrowawaysHomeless filmmaker, activist and co-director Ira McKinley, using his unique perspective, exposes how the current economic crisis is having a devastating effect on those who are in greatest need. This documentary challenges viewers to confront the daily struggles and hopes of those living on the fringes of a society that has rejected and forgotten them.

Register online.

Presentation: The forces re-shaping market research and applied social sciences
Thursday, January 29 | 4-6 p.m. | 8th Floor Barrows Hall

Scott McDonaldScott McDonald, adjunct professor of marketing at Columbia Business School former senior VP of research for Conde Nast, will discuss the the increasing availability of “digital footprints” and computational power to analyze them. This data is transforming the practice of market research. Firms are shifting from asking their customers direct questions to analyzing behavioral data that is collected passively. This transformation has profound implications for the kinds of skills required to conduct market research, for how research is organized, and for the shape of future jobs in these fields.

Reading: Chana Bloch
Thursday, January 29 | 5-7 p.m. | Morrison Room Doe Library

Chana BlochChana Bloch, award-winning poet, translator, scholar and teacher, will read from her new book. She is the author of five books of poems, six books of translation from Hebrew poetry, ancient and contemporary, and a critical study of George Herbert. Bloch is Professor Emerita of English Literature and Creative Writing at Mills College, where she taught for many years and directed the Creative Writing Program.

FridayBack to top

Film: Something Necessary
Friday, January 30 | 7 p.m. | PFA Theater

Still image from Something NecessaryJudy Kibinge's moving, beautifully filmed narrative is set in the period subsequent to the civil unrest that erupted in Kenya after the disputed 2007 elections and left over a thousand dead and hundreds of thousands displaced. A woman awakes in a hospital and learns that her husband has died in the riots, her young son is in a coma, and their farm has been destroyed. As she attempts to rebuild her life, her path crosses with that of a young man who participated in the violence. The film was released just prior to the 2013 elections, and according to the director this "meant we were confronting audiences with memories that many would rather forget."

 $5.50 BAM/PFA members; UC Berkeley students,  $6.50 UC Berkeley faculty, staff, and retirees; Non-UC Berkeley students; Senior citizens (65 & over); Disabled persons; Youth (17 & under),  $9.50 General Admission
Buy tickets online, or by calling 510-642-5249.

Special event:Conversation and performance with Myra Melford
Friday, January 30 | 6-9 p.m. | Home of Harry Bernstein and Caren Meghreblian

Myra MelfordJoin a lively evening of food, cocktails, and a special piano performance and salon conversation with UC Berkeley faculty member, composer, and Guggenheim Fellow, Myra Melford. Start the evening with a signature cocktail prepared by Shanna Farrell, head researcher for “West Coast Cocktails: An Oral History” project at UC Berkeley’s Regional Oral History Office, before Melford performs music from her recent solo recording: Life Carries Me This Way, work inspired by original artwork of the late Sacramento-based artist Don Reich. After the performance, UC Berkeley assistant professor of Music Tamara Roberts and Melford will talk about the work, Melford’s role as a curator of New Frequencies Fest/Jazz@YBCA, and the course they taught on “Improvising Community” which explored community engagement through musical improvisation.

Buy tickets online.

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