detail of exhibition image from 39 Trails: Research in the Peruvian Amazon

39 Trails: Research in the Peruvian Amazon

Gallery 318 South

This exhibition, which is co-sponsored by KU’s Biodiversity Institute, is the platform for sharing the creative projects made by a group of KU researchers who travelled to the Peruvian Amazon in summer of 2011. The team included seven undergraduate students and one graduate student under the direction of Spencer Museum curator and professor Steve Goddard and professor of entomology Caroline Chaboo. Everyone involved relied heavily on a small map of the base of their activity, the Cicra Biological Field Station. The map detailed 39 trails, underscoring the human presence in the rain forest, as well as the difficulty of navigating it.

Three of the undergraduate students were part of a pilot program: The Rudkin Undergraduate Scholarships for International Interdisciplinary Research Experiences. This new scholarship strives to give the students an arena for integrating disciplines and synthesizing knowledge across the sciences, arts, and humanities in a global setting.

The goal of the exhibition is to share the creative work by the three Rudkin Scholars and include contributions from all members of the research team to give a fuller account of the different ways the rain forest experience touched everyone involved.

Each member of the team has a small Plexiglas case to use as they wish in summarizing their experiences. In addition to the items in these cases and the written and pictorial creative work of the Rudkin Scholars, the exhibition includes printed leaves, photographs, and insect specimens.

Selected images