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Aug. 2-Sept. 16: Faculty art opens gallery in historic site

Dennis DeHart
Dennis DeHart

A photography exhibit by fine arts faculty member Dennis DeHart will inaugurate a new art gallery in a Hollywood landmark frequented by film and music titans.

“Concentrate to the Quiet” will run Aug. 2-Sept. 16 at SPOT Photo Works in the buildings known as “Crossroads of the World” at 6679 Sunset Blvd. in Hollywood, Calif. An opening reception will be 6-9 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 2.

DeHart is compelled by the connections, conflicts and intersections of the natural and cultural worlds: “My main concern is expressing interconnections – that what we do in our own backyard has a broader effect on the larger world we live in.”

Find out more about DeHart’s show at Hollywood’s SPOT

Representation in video games still falls short

David Leonard
David Leonard

When it comes to women, the video game industry still hasn’t quite figured it out.

This year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo or “E3,” the annual video game industry trade show, just wrapped up with its fair share of controversy. Ubisoft’s creative director, Alex Amancio, drew harsh criticism after stating that their latest “Assassin’s Creed” title’s co-op mode would not feature female assassins.

This is but one example of a much bigger problem in the industry as a whole.

A study of video games referenced by David Leonard, professor and chair of the Department of Critical Culture, Gender, and Race Studies at WSU, found that 64 percent of game characters were male, while 17 percent were female, fewer than even non-human characters, who came in at 19 percent. The majority of characters were white, and, of the black men seen, more than 80 percent of them showed up as competitors in sports-oriented games. Leonard found black women had an even narrower role: 90 percent of black female characters were props, bystanders or victims.

Some may argue that games are overwhelmingly white and male because studios are simply appealing to their target demographics; white males buy their games, so they need to target white male gamers. Except the demographics aren’t nearly as skewed in one particular direction.

Learn more about video game imbalance

A call for civility by candidates and supporters

Sam Reed
Sam Reed

Former Washington Secretary of State Sam Reed embodied the term “civility;” it is even included in the title of a professorship in Reed’s honor at Washington State University. Reed’s alma mater created an endowment to fund the Sam Reed Distinguished Professorship in Civic Education and Public Civility to honor Reed’s 12 years in statewide office, which came after stints as Thurston County auditor and assistant secretary of state.

Reed is a Republican who repeatedly won elections in Democratic-leaning Washington through moderate views and a fair, even-handed approach to his job. He concluded his tenure in 2012 with a statewide trek that he dubbed the “civility tour.” His message to local community leaders: When supporting candidates through endorsements or financial contributions, do so on the condition that they practice the values of civility, respect and bipartisanship. What was good advice in 2012 still stands in 2014.

Read more from the editorial board of the Yakima Herald-Republic

Art intervention in Tri-Cities via new magazine

Peter Christenson
Peter Christenson

Magazine to feature photography and written word by local artists

A new print magazine called Null Set will give a whole new meaning to the art world, its publisher hopes.

Peter Christenson, assistant professor of fine arts at WSU Tri-Cities, said the magazine, designed and published in Richland, gives people a platform to express themselves creatively.

Christenson calls it a sort of hybrid book for interventionists.

“Interventionist art is a type of art-making that seeks to engage the public and often exposes or educates or influences the public,” he said. “Interventionist art is not curated or commissioned, and it is often subversive, rooted in the Dadaist movement of the early 20th century.”

The magazine will feature photography as well as the written word in art form, with submissions by local artists. It will provide opportunities for the public to engage in a broader art discourse and to collaborate, intervene, and actively contribute to the regional culture, Christenson said.

Find out more about Null Set

Discovery opens new path to superfast quantum computing

Peter Engels
Peter Engels

Researchers at Washington State University have used a super-cold cloud of atoms that behaves like a single atom to see a phenomenon predicted 60 years ago and witnessed only once since.

The phenomenon takes place in the seemingly otherworldly realm of quantum physics and opens a new experimental path to potentially powerful quantum computing.

Working out of a lab in WSU’s Webster Hall, physicist Peter Engels and his colleagues cooled about one million atoms of rubidium to 100 billionths of a degree above absolute zero. There was no colder place in the universe, said Engels, unless someone was doing a similar experiment elsewhere on Earth or on another planet.

Learn more