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Husband and wife artists tackle global water crisis with new exhibit

Husband and wife artists Gregg Schlanger and Monica Quattrochio, troubled by what a billion Third World inhabitants must drink to survive, are opening a new installation and exhibit at the Twist Art Gallery in Nashville that deals specifically with water.

Water is a symbol of life, fertility, purification and healing, Quattrochio, an APSU alumna and fine arts photographer, said. It can evoke feelings of calmness and serenity but also conjure up strength and power.
Husband and wife artists Gregg Schlanger and Monica Quattrochio, troubled by what a billion Third World inhabitants must drink to survive, are opening a new installation and exhibit at the Twist Art Gallery in Nashville that deals specifically with water.

“Water is a symbol of life, fertility, purification and healing,” Quattrochio, an APSU alumna and fine arts photographer, said. “It can evoke feelings of calmness and serenity but also conjure up strength and power.”

The exhibit, which opens Nov. 7 from 6 to 9 p.m. and runs through Nov. 28, will feature literal and abstract photographs by Quattrochio and a public installation by Schlanger, a professor and chair of the APSU Department of Art.

“My photographs are a study on water and its essential purpose for the function of the human body in relation to the symbolic meanings that quench the spirit,” she said.

Schlanger's installation will feature 48 one-gallon glass bottles displayed on a wooden shelf inside the gallery.

“Each bottle represents a different country and indicates the amount of water used per person per day in each country,” he said. “There will be 14 small houses made of ice. The icehouses will melt each day. The amount of water used to create the icehouses each day will be 50 liters. The houses are to represent the domestic use of water around the world.”

The average person needs about 50 liters of water a day for domestic uses such as drinking, hygiene, sanitation services and food preparation. About 20 percent of the world's population only uses around five liters a day.

“It is my intention to bring awareness about this global crisis through this piece,” Schlanger said. “As a global community, we should guarantee that every person has access and the right to at least 50 liters of clean water every day.”

Schlanger works primarily in installations and community public art, and this new piece is a continuation of a larger installation he created in Potsdam, Germany. That work is now on display at the Bank of America Plaza in Charlotte, N.C.

The installation is for sale, and Schlanger said the majority of the money earned will go to purchasing a well water system for a developing nation.

The Twist Art Gallery, located at 73 Arcade, is part of a collective of 11 art studios and galleries known as Art at the Arcade.

The show is free and open to the public. For more information, visit http://www.twistartgallery.com or call 888-535-5286. -- Charles Booth