LSU CAN Launches Premiere Event

The newly formed LSU CAN (Creative Arts Network), a collaborative, multidisciplinary arts initiative, launches its premiere event next month with a “song salon” moderated by best‐selling fiction writer and neuroscientist Dr. David Eagleman, who will use the music of several distinct time periods to explore how aural stimulation affects our perception of visual art.

Entitled “The Art of Perception,” the event will be held Friday October 8 from 5‐7 PM in Foster Hall on the LSU campus. LSU CAN is presenting it in collaboration with the Houston‐based Divas World Productions as part of their Song Salon series. Future song salons are planned for later this year.

“This is a wonderful way to integrate music and thought as well as expose students and faculty to subjects that are outside their own fields,” says Sonja Bruzaukas, artistic direction of Divas World Productions. “This leads to a greater understanding of all areas of the university, profound stimulation and inspiration.”

Organizers of LSU CAN chose to team up with Divas World to present a Song Salon for the first event of the academic year because of the success of last year’s “Invisible Populations” exhibit, which was a joint project of the School of Art and the Department of English. One of the best‐attended events of the “Invisible Populations” exhibit was a lecture by C.D. Wright held in conjunction with a reception for Deborah Luster’s exhibition of photography.

“What made the event exceptional was the merging of two separate audiences,” explains School of Art Director Rod Parker. “Since a similar synthesis is the basis for the Divas World program we felt it was the ideal kickoff event for the Creative Arts Network.”

LSU CAN is the latest evolution of the Big Arts initiative, which was started in the summer of 2009 and brought together several arts‐related entities on the LSU campus to collaborate on projects, performances and issues of shared concern. Among those participating in LSU CAN are the School of Art, College of Music and Dramatic Arts, Department of English, LSU Museum of Art, The Southern Review, and AVATAR, a digital arts initiative.

LSU CAN is not only beneficial because of the lines of communication it opens. It’s more relevant than ever in light of state budget cuts that are threatening arts organizations.

“We’re looking to extend our network statewide and regionally so we can develop additional partnerships and pool our resources in order to emerge from this period of retrenchment better able to bring nationally prominent artists, writers and performers, exhibits to Baton Rouge,” says Parker. “The Creative Arts Network members aren’t just hunkering down and waiting for the budgetary storm to pass but are actively planning how we will come through this with a stronger vision for how the arts can grow together.”