LASER Talks at Davis | Leonardo/ISAST

LASER Talks at Davis

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LASER (Leonardo Art Science Evening Rendezvous) is Leonardo/ISAST's international program of evening gatherings that brings artists and scientists together for informal presentations and conversations.

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CHAIRS: Jiayi Young and Tim Hyde


Winter LASER (Leonardo Art Science Evening Rendezvous)

Thursday, February 15, 2018
Music 115
6:00–8:00 p.m.

The LASER talks at UC Davis are evening presentations that engage the public as participants in conversations with artists, designers, scientists, and technologists. During each LASER, we feature three speakers, each will give a casual 15 minute presentation. Together with the audience, we will then carry on a conversation. The evenings are designed to encourage unexpected juxtapositions between seemingly unrelated projects to facilitate interdisciplinary exchange. The speaker series is also a part of an international network, and each LASER is documented and disseminated through ARTECA ( by Leonardo and MIT press.



Grant Ballard

Chief Science Officer at Point Blue Conservation Science

“Providing the scientific basis for protection of the world’s last pristine ocean”

Grant Ballard currently leads several projects investigating and communicating the effects of landscape-scale environmental stressors on ecosystems and human stakeholders in western North America and the Southern Ocean. He is responsible for shaping and growing the organization’s multi-investigator scientific research and conservation programs towards the vision that healthy ecosystems will continue to sustain thriving wildlife and human communities in California and beyond, on land and at sea, for decades to come. He will talk about his research on the Ross Sea ecosystem, the creation of a large Marine Protected Area, and climate-smart conservation.


 Marit MacArthur

 Lecturer, University Writing Program, UC Davis

“Poetry Reading, Performative Speech, and Sound Studies”

Marit MacArthur analyzes recordings of poetry readings as texts-in-performance, researching the evolution of and trends in performance styles. Such research requires tools that work well on low-quality, noisy audio common in humanities research, including poetry readings, radio plays, and talking books, the datasets for a new collaborative project funded by a NEH Digital Humanities Advancement grant. Working with media historian Mara Mills (NYU), radio historian Neil Verma (Northwestern University), neuroscientist/bioengineer Lee Miller (UC Davis), and software developer Robert Ochshorn, MacArthur is developing and supporting humanistic research on audio archives. She will talk about her initial findings analyzing sample recordings of 100 American poets.


 Veronika Hubeny


"Wonders of Black Holes"

Veronika Hubeny is a theoretical physicist, exploring the fundamental underpinnings of our universe. Her research interests lie mainly in areas of string theory and quantum gravity. Hoping to elucidate the underlying nature of spacetime, she is particularly fascinated by `holographic dualities’ which describe higher-dimensional gravitational theory by a lower- dimensional non-gravitational one. Much of her work involves deeper understanding of black holes within this context, and their mysterious links to quantum information theory.



Generously sponsored by HArCS, College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences UC Davis and Leonardo/ISAST.

UC Davis

LASER (Leonardo Art Science Evening Rendezvous) Talks is Leonardo's international program of evening gatherings that bring artists and scientists together for informal presentations and conversations. LASER Talks were founded in 2008 by Bay Area LASER Chair Piero Scaruffi and are in over 30 cities around the world. To learn more about how our LASER Hosts and to visit a LASER near you please visit our website

The mission of the LASERs is to provide the general public with a snapshot of the cultural environment of a region and to foster interdisciplinary networking.

February 15th, 2018 6:00 PM   through   8:00 PM
Hutchison Dr
107 Main, Art Annex
UC Davis
Davis, CA 95616
United States

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