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Image courtesy First Run Features
David Lebrun, 2004
Thu, Feb 24, 2005 7 PM
An animated documentary, Proteus was one of this year's Sundance Film Festival's most unexpected hits. Through dazzlingly inventive visual means, it explores the 19th century's engagement with the undersea world through science, technology, painting, poetry, and myth. The film's central figure is German zoologist Ernst Haeckel (1834-1919), whose books helped to popularize Darwin's theory of evolution. His exquisite illustrations in such works as Art Forms in Nature synthesized his twin passions for single-celled sea creatures and the medium of lithography.

With narration spoken by actors Marian Seldes and Richard Dysart, Proteus makes audiences "contemplate the majestic vastness of the natural universe and its complex artistic perfection in ways that even Haeckel could only have imagined" (Variety). (60 mins.)

support credits

Season support provided by the Rohauer Collection Foundation and the Corporate Annual Fund of the Wexner Center Foundation.

Contemporary films, international films, and visiting filmmakers presented with support from the Ohio Arts Council.


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Josef Albers, Leaf Study IX, c. 1940Leaves on paper28 x 24 ¾ inches© The Josef and Anni Albers Foundation/ Artists Rights Society New YorkPhoto: Tim Nighswander/Imaging 4 Art

Leap Before You Look: Black Mountain College 1933–1957
opens September 17, 2016.

Join us for the Fall Exhibition Preview on September 16.