Anuradha Mathur, an architect and landscape architect, is the Penn State Department of Landscape Architecture 2012 John R. Bracken Fellow. Mathur is professor and associate chair in the Department of Landscape Architecture at the University of Pennsylvania. She will give a talk on her recent work at 6 p.m., November 6, as part of the Bracken Lecture Series.
In collaboration with her partner Dilip da Cunha she has focused her artistic and design expertise on cultural and ecological issues of contentious landscapes. Their investigations have taken them to diverse terrains, including the Lower Mississippi, New York, Sundarbans, Bangalore, Mumbai and, most recently, Jerusalem. An underlying thread in Mathur’s work is a concern for how water is visualized and engaged in ways that lead to conditions of its excess and scarcity, but also the opportunities that its fluidity offers for new visualizations of terrain, design imagination, and design practice. She conceived and curated the international symposium titled “In the Terrain of Water,” which was held at PennDesign in April, 2011 and April, 2012. Mathur and da Cunha have authored, designed and curated three major traveling exhibitions: “Mississippi Floods: Designing a Shifting Landscape,” “Deccan Traverses: the Making of Bangalore’s Terrain,” and “Soak: Mumbai in an Estuary.”
Mathur's and da Cunha's work will be exhibited in the Rouse Gallery.
Each year the Department of Landscape Architecture sponsors the John R. Bracken Lecture Series and honors a distinguished individual as the John R. Bracken Fellow. Dr. Bracken is key to the department’s rich history – he was among the first to graduate from Penn State with an undergraduate degree in landscape architecture and he served as department head from 1924 to 1957. Dr. Bracken continued to serve the department as an active professor emeritus until his death in 1979. The lecture series, which began in the spring of 1982, was made possible by a generous endowment from Bracken's estate. These lectures, and the association with noted professionals through seminars and intimate discussions, have enriched the lives of our students.