Happy birthday, Cabaret! Buffalo’s Science & Art Cabaret turns 5

Event poster showing a black-and-white illustration of the brain.

The beloved event series, launched in 2009, kicks off a new season in October

Release Date: October 8, 2014 This content is archived.

“Brains. Most of us have them, but none of us really know how they work. These kilo-and-a-half blobs of neurons are the fount of all human creativity, love, empathy, and knowledge. ”
Will Kinney, professor of physics
University at Buffalo

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Catch Buffalo’s Science & Art Cabaret while you can.

The event series, which hosts conversations between the region’s leading scientific and artistic minds, will kick off its 2014-15 season with an evening of entertaining talks titled, “Love Yer Brain.”

The brain-themed cabaret, taking place in late October, is the only one planned for fall. After that, audiences will have to wait until spring for another event in the series.

“Love Yer Brain” will occur at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 22 at the Ninth Ward at Babeville, 341 Delaware Ave., Buffalo. It’s free to the public, with a cash bar.

This season marks a special milestone for the cabaret, which began in fall 2009 and is now 5 years old.

The series — organized by the University at Buffalo College of Arts and Sciences, Hallwall's Contemporary Arts Center and Buffalo Museum of Science — is a place where audiences can grab a drink and watch as artists and scientists discuss how a common theme relates to their work. The cabaret is funded in part by UB’s Technē Institute.

Over the years, the event’s mixture of fresh ideas and fun conversation has won the hearts — and brains — of Buffalonians looking for an interesting night out. Topics of discussion have ranged from magic and illusion to relativity and black holes.

The line-up for “Love Yer Brain” includes:

  • A presentation by Josephine Anstey, UB chair of media study, on “Improvising Consciousness: The Past and Future of the Human Mind”
  • A recorded interview by Hallwalls curator John Massier with California artist Deborah Aschheim, who is known for her neurological art
  • A discussion by Christopher Cohan, UB professor of pathology and anatomical sciences, on “The Beauty of the Brain and a Museum Where You Can See It”
  • A talk by local neurosurgeon Lee Guterman titled, “It’s Not Rocket Science, It’s Only Brain Surgery”

Co-organizer Will Kinney, a UB physics professor, explains why he and fellow hosts chose the topic, brains:

"Brains. Most of us have them, but none of us really know how they work,” he says. “These kilo-and-a-half blobs of neurons are the fount of all human creativity, love, empathy and knowledge. ‘Love Yer Brain' puts the physical locus of our mind in the spotlight for an evening of diverse and creative viewpoints from local experts on art, media, and neuroscience. Yes, it may be brain surgery, but we make it fun!”

Co-organizer John Massier adds, “Despite residing solidly in the 21st century — effectively, living in the future we all once imagined — no amount of technological, scientific, artistic, or social progress is an adequate guard against slipping into a new Age of Unreason. It was one of Carl Sagan’s biggest fears as he described the ‘demon-haunted’ and superstitious world we inhabit.

“In the end,” Massier says, “there is nothing that will save us from this more than our brain. It is our primary organ for perceiving and making sense of the world. Some might suggest it has a huge hand in creating that world. It certainly has a gigantic part in critical thinking and imagination, two characteristics key to both science and art. Without these, we are lost.”

Media Contact Information

Charlotte Hsu is a former staff writer in University Communications. To contact UB's media relations staff, email ub-news@buffalo.edu or visit our list of current university media contacts.