sLowlife, a dynamic multimedia exhibition presents unusual and sometimes unnerving perspectives on how a plant reacts, both short- and long-term, to its inner and outer worlds.
Many of us think of and treat plants as inanimate objects. But a plant grows, reacts to changes in its environment, reproduces, responds to disease and injury, and undergoes a slow decline into old age and death— a saga that sounds hauntingly familiar. Contrary to our conscious perception, plants do move…be it ever so slowly.
Through vivid time-lapse photography and movies, sLowlife accelerates the time-scale of plants into our own frame of reference, speeding up their everyday lives to a pace that resonates with our own. Nationally known composer John Gibson (Indiana University), using scientific data from the plant studies on which the exhibition is based, created the fascinating sounds accompanying sLowlife. The gallery-style presentation also features concise text and live plant material.
Exhibition themes include: the Un-Still Life; Darwin’s Observations; Movement Above Ground; Movement Below Ground; Movement Within; Gene Activation; Photosynthesis; and the Power of Plants, which features selections from a nationwide photo contest to capture “the power of plants,” held in the summer of 2005.
sLowlife is a collaborative project of the United States Botanic Garden (USBG), the Chicago Botanic Garden and Roger Hangarter, Indiana University. Additional support has been provided by the American Society of Plant Biologists, Indiana University and the National Science Foundation. sLowlife is based on an original concept by Hangarter and Dennis DeHart, State University of New York.
The local appearance of sLowlife is made possible by Longacre's Nursery Center and Henderson's Tree Service & Fine Gardening.