Gray Matter Series looks at UB’s political activism, scholarly innovations in the 1970s
Release Date: April 15, 2013
BUFFALO, N.Y. – The University at Buffalo Humanities Institute will begin its third annual Gray Matter Series on May 2 with “The Humanities on Main Street,” a retrospective on UB’s energetic campus life in the 1970s.
This event will take place at 6:30 p.m. in UB’s Anderson Galley, One Martha Jackson Place, off Englewood Avenue between Kenmore Avenue and Main Street, Buffalo.
It is free and open to the public.
The Gray Matter events are intended to familiarize the Buffalo community with humanities’ scholarship, research and practice.
The evening will feature discussions, demonstrations and presentations that illustrate the political action and avant-garde art, music, writing and intellectual innovation that marked UB in the 1970s and had a long lasting impact on the campus and the city.
In addition to illuminating UB’s exceptional academic star power at the time, presentations will focus on the synergy between the South Campus Buffalo cultural institutions—established ones like the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and the Albright-Knox Art Gallery—as well as independent, forward-looking newcomers like Artpark, Hallwalls and the CEPA Gallery.
Scheduled presentations and discussions that evening will include:
6:30 p.m. Panel discussion featuring three speakers familiar with UB during that era—Mark Shechner, emeritus professor of English, who will speak to the local poetry scene that produced—among other things—the “little magazines” of the ‘70s and a healthy serving of experimental literature; Mike Frisch, professor and senior research scholar in American studies, who will discuss the campus politics of the time and Renee Levine, managing director of the Center of the Creative and Performing Arts at UB from 1965 to1978, and author of “This Life of Sounds: Evenings for New Music in Buffalo,” who will address the UB Department of Music and its avant-garde legacy.
8:15 p.m. Break-out sessions (visitors are invited to participate) — with Levine and Michael Basinski, curator of the UB Poetry and Rare Books Collection, who will present and discuss a sample of the “little magazines” that Buffalo writers produced in the seventies, many of which are held in the Poetry Collection’s 9,000-title Little Magazine Collection, which comprises publications dating from the mid-19th century.
Also available will be audio and visual selections representing the period: