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Finding God in All Things: Local Artist Begins New Mural for Center for Environmental Studies

Inspired by O’Dowd’s Living Lab and our charism of Finding God in All Things, local artist Hannah Mode, whose work intersects art, science, sustainability, and spirituality, has been commissioned to create a mural on our Center for Environmental Studies building.

Hannah toured the Living Lab with O’Dowd teacher and Lab co-founder, Annie Prutzman, who shared about the native plants found throughout the gardens and their unique characteristics.

“I take each plant and try to show the spirit of it, from stem to flower,” Hannah explained, arranging the plants on a cyanotype paper. “By carefully layering the flowers, they will uniquely block the sun’s layers to create a pattern. The entire exposure process takes about 20 minutes.”

Hannah’s interest in art, science, and spirituality is strongly aligned with the lessons of former O’Dowd teacher and another co-founder of the Living Lab, Tom Tyler, who taught at O’Dowd from 1979 to 2005. Hannah is inspired by the geology of the Bay Area and will incorporate a portion of the United States Geologic Survey map that includes O’Dowd’s campus in her mural. “By highlighting a geologic map, the design collapses human and geologic time scales, emphasizing that we are all tied into interconnected Earth systems,” said Hannah.

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