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Museum of Culture and Environment

Upcoming Programs and Lectures

Upcoming Events and Lectures:

Opening reception: New Exhibits at the MCE! Pulling Back the Curtain and Our Changing PNW!

5:30 p.m.Thursday, September 28

Come celebrate with the Museum of Culture & Environment staff, and faculty and students from Museum Studies as we open two fabulous new exhibits for Fall 2017! Pulling Back the Curtain is an interactive exhibit that creatively explores the mysterious rituals that take place behind-the-scenes at museums. Why can’t you touch the artifacts in museum exhibits? And why do museums hide most of the objects they own? Our Changing Pacific Northwest brings into focus a central concern: anthropogenic climate change by asking, “How will climate change impact our region?” To answer this, the exhibit features the work of two CWU scientists, Susan Kaspari and Megan Walsh, whose research into the past helps us understand what the future may hold.


Revealing the Hidden Stories of Museum Objects Through Chemistry

5: 30 p.m. Thursday, October 12

CWU chemistry professor JoAnn Peters works at the intersection between chemistry, art, and museums. She has worked on conservation issues at the Royal British Columbia Museum as well as the Yakima Valley Museum.  Come and learn about JoAnn’s discoveries in these museum collections as she explains how chemistry can help us see artworks and historical artifacts in a new light!


Workshop: Caring for Your Treasures

10:30 a.m., Saturday October 14

No matter whether it’s a quilt, a photograph, or a cheap plastic toy, everyone has a treasure they hold dear! This Saturday workshop is intended for people who want to safeguard family heirlooms or other precious, but fragile objects.  Participants will learn about ways to extend the life of historic and important artifacts, and to keep them in good condition for years to come. This will include valuable lessons in object care from the MCE’s collections manager, Lynn Bethke, and the opportunity to ask questions about your own special treasures.



The Alchemous Beasts Tour: poet and CWU professor Maya Jewell Zeller and Spokane folk musician Liz Rognes

6:30 p.m., Tuesday, October 24

Prof. Maya Jewell Zeller will read from her new collaborative collection Alchemy for Cells & Other Beasts, teaming up with Spokane musician Liz Rognes to present an evening of poetry and original folk tunes. The pair will share work that thoughtfully interrogates the politicization of women's bodies, with connections to the environments in which they live.

Maya Jewell Zeller is the author of Alchemy for Cells & Other Beasts (collaboration with visual artist Carrie DeBacker, Entre Rios Books, fall 2017), Yesterday, the Bees (Floating Bridge Press, 2015), and Rust Fish (Lost Horse Press, 2011). She teaches poetry and poetics for Central Washington University and edits poetry for Spokane Press Scablands Books. She lives in the Inland Northwest.

Liz Rognes is a writer, musician, and teacher in Spokane, Washington. She is a singer/songwriter, composer, and multi-instrumentalist whose classical and pop musical influences range from folk to baroque to jazz. Her essays and poems have been featured in various publications, including Brain, Child: The Magazine for Thinking Mothers and Railtown Almanac. She teaches at Eastern Washington University and lives in Spokane with her rock ‘n’ roll librarian and their son.


Fire and Ice in the PNW

5:30 p.m., Tuesday, November 14

CWU professors Susan Kaspari (Geological Sciences) and Megan Walsh (Geography) help us envision the future of climate change in the Pacific Northwest by looking into the past! Susan’s research examines the impact of black carbon (commonly referred to as soot) on the melting rates of glaciers and seasonal snowpack.  Megan’s research explores how ancient charcoal deposits can help us understand past fire activity.  Taken together, their work can help us understand the complicated relationship between humans, fire, ice/snow, and climate change.


The Museum of Culture & Environment is located in Dean Hall on the CWU Campus, 1200 Wildcat Way. Parking behind Dean Hall is free after 4:30 p.m. on weekdays and free all day Saturday.



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