Science, Art, and the Brain Discussed at Sokol Lecture

Titled “The Brain: Creating Science Creating Art,” dual lectures explore the brain, science and creativity

Photo: Mike Peters

Keynote speaker Nancy Andreasen, PhD, MD, addresses the audience at the 2009 Sokol Science Lecture.

Focusing on how the brain influences and contributes to human creativity, the 2009 Margaret and Herman Sokol Science Lecture drew a full house to the Alexander Kasser Theater on April 7. Featuring presentations by artist Elizabeth Horowitz and neuroscientist Nancy Andreasen, the event provided fascinating insight into the connections between science, art, creativity, and the brain.

Horowitz, who specializes in watercolors she describes as “NeuroAbstractions,” showed and discussed her work, and Andreasen based her lecture on her bestselling book, The Creating Brain: The Neuroscience of Genius. A lively question and answer period followed the presentations.

Andreasen, who earlier in the day had met with students for an informal discussion, is Andrew H. Woods Chair of Psychiatry and Director of the Neuroimaging Research Center and the Mental Health Clinical Research Center at The University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine. She was awarded the President’s National Medal of Science in 2000.

Elizabeth Horowitz has exhibited her "NeuroAbstractions" at the New York Academy of Sciences and the Howard Hughes Medical Center in Ashburn, Virginia. She is a member of the New York Society of Illustrators, the Garden State Watercolor Society, and signature member of North East Watercolor Society.

Established with a generous gift from benefactors Margaret and Herman Sokol, the Sokol Science Lecture annually provides an opportunity for members of the University and surrounding communities to gain a greater appreciation and expanded knowledge of important issues in science. Speakers are selected on the basis of interdisciplinary appeal in their area of expertise and public recognition.

See more photos from the Sokol Lecture.