Women & Water in West Virginia
A visual exhibit of photos, paintings and sculptures, curated by WVU Assistant Professor of Geography, Martina Angela Caretta; Geography MA student, Bethani Turley; Friends of Cheat Executive Director, Amanda Pitzer; and Media and Outreach Specialist, Beth Warnick.
Exhibit: March 4-April 30, 2019
Downtown Campus Library Room 1020
Opening Reception with poetry reading and art performance: March 4, 2019, 5-7pm, Room 1020
Careers in the Water Sector: March 19, 12-1:30pm, Room 104
Safe Drinking Water and Reproductive Health: March 28, 4-5:30pm, Room 104
Screening of Short Films by WV Department of Environmental Protection: April 11, 5-6:30 pm, Room 104
Curators: WVU Assistant Professor of Geography, Martina Angela Caretta; Geography MA student, Bethani Turley; Friends of the Cheat Executive Director, Amanda Pitzer; and Media and Outreach Specialist, Beth Warnick
About: This exhibit features approximately 20 photos, paintings, and sculptures collected, and in some cases created by, WV women water stewards. The contributing women are active in WV in the fields of water policy and advocacy, source water protection, pollution prevention and remediation, conservation, and environmental education. The imagery explores these women's experiences around water in WV and the accompanying narrative panels include personal descriptions of the relevance of each woman's submitted works. A section of the exhibit will also be dedicated to exploring the embodied experiences of water contamination in West Virginia as it pertains to gender.
The panels are designed by Friends of the Cheat Executive Director Amanda Pitzer. The exhibit will be on display in Room 1020 of Downtown Campus Library, adjacent to the main exhibit and visible from the main space, during Women's History Month, March 2019 through April 2019.
Join us for the opening reception on March 4th. The opening reception will include a poetry reading by Affrilachian poet Crystal Good, MFA and a performance art piece by Heather Schneider.
A second panel titled Women in Water Careers and Professionalization, moderated by Dr. Caretta, will take place on March 19th. This panel will feature women working in WV on water related issues: Teresa Koon, Assistant Director of the Division of Water and Waste Management WV Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP), Angie Rosser, Executive Director of the non-profit WV Rivers Coalition and Megan Kruger, West Virginia Water Research Institute Environmental Education and Outreach Coordinator. This panel will explore the challenges— gendered and beyond— related to working in the water sector, in a state as WV with limited resources for environmental protection.
A third and final panel titled Flint and Charleston: Drinking water pollution and its impact on women's health will be held on March 28th to discuss safe drinking water and reproductive health. This panel, moderated by Geography MA student Bethani Turley, will feature a discussion with WVU Department of Public Health PhD candidate Maya Nye, WVU Economics Assistant Professor Daniel Grossman, and WVFree Executive Director Margaret Chapman. Assistant Professor Grossman will discuss his research on the impact of polluted water on fertility in Flint, Michigan. Margaret Chapman, Executive Director of West Virginia Free, a nonprofit organization whose vision is to "elevate all West Virginians through the promotion of dignity and autonomy of women and families," and Maya Nye, from WVU Public Health Department, will discuss their "Women and Water" education campaign on the importance of safe drinking water for protecting women's and children's health.
The Women & Water exhibit and related panels are funded by NSF Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Science, Inc. (CUAHSI) Let's Talk About Water grant. This exhibit and set of activities is part of the larger WATER exhibit and year-long programming. The WATER exhibit and program series are collaborative, multidisciplinary endeavors designed to educate and provoke thought about the impact of water in its various forms, with cross campus and community collaboration, developed by WVU Libraries Exhibits Coordinator Sally Deskins and the Art in the Libraries Committee and interpreted by West Virginia Water Research Institute Environmental Education and Outreach Coordinator Megan Kruger. Through interactive displays of scholarship, groundwork, art and history, we examine this critical resource and its essential life-giving and life-taking qualities from floods, drought and contamination, to a source of life, beauty, adventure and recreational play. Over 20 WVU faculty, students and community members and groups contributed to this interactive exhibit. The community will join with the West Virginia University Libraries to explore aspects of water impacting our lives, near and far.