The Human Epoch: Living in the Anthropocene 

October 28, 2020 to March 13, 2021

This curricular exhibition and related website support the teaching of a new introductory environmental literacy and science course offered by the Department of Geosciences at the University of Connecticut, GSCI 1000E The Human Epoch: Living in the Anthropocene. The course is intended to help students better comprehend global environmental change and to combat “eco-anxiety” by understanding how the Earth actually works. The exhibition offers a point of entry for the broader campus community, as well as the general public, to a set of key questions addressed in the course such as: How does the Earth work, and is it fragile? How and why have humans changed it? How does climate change fit into the larger story? When and how will our epoch end?

Curated by Robert Thorson, Department Head (Interim) and Professor, Geosciences, with Amanda Douberley, Assistant Curator/Academic Liaison, William Benton Museum of Art.

Click here to enter the online exhibition.

Listen to Robert Thorson’s TEDxUConn talk on The Human Epoch: The Anthropocene Epoch as Earthly Modernity

Exhibition related programs are listed below.

"Landscape" by George Bunker
George Bunker (1923-1991), Landscape, 1973. Lithograph. Gift of The George R. Bunker Living Trust. Benton Museum collection.

"Devil's Punch Bowl #129, by Truman Ward Ingersoll
Truman Ward Ingersoll (1862-1922), Devil’s Punch Bowl #129, 1885-1890. Albumen Print.  Gift of Samuel Charters and Ann Charters. Benton Museum collection.

"Gas Line, from the portfolio of CITY-SCAPES by Ron Kleemann
Ron Kleemann (1937-2014), Gas Line, from the portfolio CITY-SCAPES, 1979. Screenprint. Gift of Eugene I. Schuster. Benton Museum collection.

"Tornado, from the series Accidentally Kansas" by Lori Nix
Lori Nix (b. 1969), Tornado, from the series Accidentally Kansas, 1998. Chromogenic print. Gift of the Artist, Medici Circle. Benton Museum collection.


Listen to Conversation with the Curators: Living in the Anthropocene 
Date: Thursday, November 12, 2020

Robert Thorson, Department Head and Professor of Geosciences at UConn, and Amanda Douberley, Assistant Curator/Academic Liaison, William Benton Museum of Art, discuss the exhibition, The Human Epoch: Living in the Anthropocene.

Critical Looking: A Virtual Dialogue
Tap your powers of observation and investigate a single work of art through close looking and discussion with Amanda Douberley, Assistant Curator/Academic Liaison. The program will focus on works featured in Living in the Anthropocene. These are presented via Zoom and are small group sessions so please register ahead.

  • January 29, 12:15-12:45pm Ana Mandieta, Silueta Works in Mexico (1977)
  • February 9, 6-6:30pm Robert Aller, Waste Pool, Marble Quarry, Barre, VT (1989)
  • February 26, 12:15-12:45pm Craig Varjabedian, La Conquistadora at the Trinity Nuclear Test Site, Near Socorro, New Mexico (1996)
  • March 9, 6-6:30pm Lori Nix, Tornado, from the series Accidentally Kansas (1999)