On Oct. 3-5, the Pomona College Departments of Dance and Neuroscience will present a public symposium, "The Moving Mind: A Forum for Dialogue Between the Arts and Sciences." Through lectures, workshops and exhibits, the symposium will bring together scientists and artists—including world-renowned neuroscientist Dr. V.S. Ramachandran, director of the Center for Brain and Cognition, movement artist and therapist Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen, psychologist Dr. Emily Cross, artist David Michalek and others—to examine how those interested in the cognitive or neurosciences might explore ideas through the process of embodied exploration.

"Scientists, artists, and scholars share the common goals of creative thinking, use of imagination, and articulate expression.  The Moving Mind Symposium will be an arena for exploration and reflection across disciplines," says Pomona College Professor of Dance Laurie Cameron.

Dr. Ramachandran, called "the Marco Polo of Neuroscience" by Richard Dawkins, will deliver the keynote address, "What Neurology Can Reveal About the Human Mind," on Thurs., Oct. 3 at 8 p.m. in Bridges Auditorium (450 N. College Way, Claremont). A distinguished professor in the psychology department and neurosciences program at the University of California, San Diego, Ramachandran is the author of A Brief Tour of Human Consciousness, Phantoms in the Brain, and The Tell Tale Brain: A Neuroscientists's Quest for What Makes Us Human. He was named on Time magazine's list of the 100 most influential people in the world.

Workshops will be held from 10 a.m.-5:15 p.m., Friday and Saturday. Among the many presenters are Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen and Dr. Emily Cross.

For over 50 years, Bainbridge Cohen has been working with movement, touch and the body-mind relationship, as an innovator and leader in developing the Body-Mind Centering® approach. Her work has influenced the fields of bodywork, movement, dance, yoga, body psychotherapy, childhood education and many other body-mind disciplines. Her workshops, "Embodying the Heart-1" and "Embodying the Heart -II," held at 10 a.m. on Friday and Saturday will explore the embodied anatomy and consciousness of the heart. Through this experience, participants (no dance experience is necessary) will discover how the heart supports movement and how movement supports the well-being of the heart. Reservations are required.

A 2001 Pomona College graduate majoring in psychology and dance,  Cross teaches at Bangor University in Wales and Radboud University Nijmegen in The Netherlands. She works extensively with dancers to study how action expertise is manifest and behavioral and brain levels. Her Friday afternoon workshop, "So you think you can dance? A look at the neuroscience of dance performance and perception," will examine research about what viewers experience when they watch dancers.

Other workshops that weekend include:

  • "Contemplative Art Viewing" with Mitra Manesh, Mindfulness Practitioner, UCLA
  • "The Somatics of Yoga" with Gail Abrams, Department of Dance, Scripps College
  • "How to Look at What We See" with Arden Reed, Department of English, Pomona College and David Michalek, Visual Artist and Lecturer, Yale Divinity School
  • "Understanding who we are: The complicated relationship between science, bodies and non-conforming identities" with Rachel Levin, Department of Neuroscience, Pomona College
  • "Understanding the Behavior of World Leaders Through Movement Analysis" with Brenda Connors, Behavioral Research Fellow; Chief of Naval Operations Strategic Studies Group, Newport, Rhode Island and Richard Rende, Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Brown University
  • "On Breath and Balance" with Meg Jolley, Department of Theatre and Dance, Pomona College
  • "Queer Art: Contested Questions" with Joss Greene, activist, PhD candidate, Rutgers University
  • "The Creative Imagination: Intersections of Science and Art" panel discussion with Dr. V.S. Ramachandran, Dr. Emily Cross, Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen; Moderator: Kathleen Stewart Howe, Director, Pomona College Museum of Art

For locations, a full schedule of the symposium, and to register for the "Embodying the Heart" workshops, visit: www.dance.pomona.edu/movingmind. For more information, contact: laurie.cameron@pomona.edu or call (909) 621-8176.

In conjunction with the symposium, David Michalek's "Figure Studies," an exhibit that applies the technology of high–speed HD video to the recording of human movement, will be on view at the Pomona College Museum of Art (330 N. College Ave., Claremont) through December 22. (Please note this exhibition contains female and male nudity.) His large-scale video projection, "Slow Dancing," which has transfixed viewers at Harvard University, Lincoln Center, Opera Bastille in Paris, and Trafalgar Square in London, will be projected on the facade of Bridges Auditorium (450 N. College Way, Claremont) from 8 -11 p.m., Oct. 1-Oct.5.  

Pomona College is one of the nation's premier liberal arts institutions, offering a comprehensive program in the arts, humanities, social sciences and natural sciences. Its hallmarks include small classes, close relationships between students and faculty, and a range of opportunities for student research. Visit Pomona College on the web at www.pomona.edu.