IU East Mindful Explorations presents lecture by artist Paul X. Rutz

Indiana University East will present a Mindful Explorations artist talk by painter Paul X. Rutz at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, February 4, in the Whitewater Hall First Bank Richmond Community Room. The talk, “Into a Study: A New Direction for Art & Science Collaboration,” is free and open to the public.

Oil painting by Paul X. Rutz titled "On the March [Mars Gradivus]."

Oil painting by Paul X. Rutz titled “On the March [Mars Gradivus].”

The talk is sponsored by the School of Humanities and Social Sciences and Mindful Explorations, courtesy of the William H. and Jean R. Reller Endowment.

“Into a Study” focuses on the potential for artists and scientists to collaborate. Rutz is a painter. Since early 2017 he has worked with neuroscientist Amanda Hampton Wray, Ph.D., to build an art exhibit that watches its own viewers.

The team installs a series of original oil paintings designed both as a coherent body of artwork and as stimuli for a neuroaesthetic study. Wearing eye tracking technology invented by Jason Babcock of Positive Science, LLC, viewers voice their reactions to the work while their eye movements reveal their patterns of attention in real time. In this way, art viewers double as subjects in a data collection event, allowing the team to study how people make decisions about artworks.

During his talk, Rutz will present the current findings and what the team has learned. The visit follows his residency at Purdue University from January 13-30, 2020.

While at IU East, Rutz will visit with a Senior Capstone class, FINA S-400, taught by Ann Kim, associate professor of fine arts. He will meet one-on-one with students to discuss their work.

Rutz’s slide-show talk will focus mainly on how two professionals in very different disciplines learned to collaborate, pulling together a team of experts and advisors, muddling through false starts, and building continuous revision into the project’s design.

Rutz earned his Ph.D. in Visual Culture from Purdue University in 2011. The same year, he took his studio painting practice to Portland, Oregon, where he continues to explore fresh ways to picture real people and objects. His past exhibitions include solo shows at Ford Gallery, the Oregon Military Museum and various academic galleries, as well as group shows at Mark Woolley Gallery and the Smithsonian Institution. A graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, Rutz also writes about military history. He has been published in the Huffington Post, Army History, Cincinnati Review, Military History and elsewhere.