On the left a diagram of a labyrinth in the shape of an ear; on the right an overhead view of a green field with the path of the ear labyrinth visible

"In the effort to repair our relationship to the land, Janine Antoni will make a labyrinth, an ancient archetypal tool that dates back 3,500 years. As with all labyrinths, walking the circuitous path gives us an opportunity to slow down, arrive in our bodies, and enter a receptive state. Surrendering to the path, we are led into wholeness. To enhance the notion of an inward journey, Antoni’s labyrinth is shaped to follow the anatomy of the ear. We will traverse our inner and outer landscape. Working from the path outwards, we will begin to tend the land with the intention of a gentle prairie reset. As we continue to draw the ear with our steps, we listen more deeply."

excerpt from "We Listen With Our Steps, The Land Speaks," Janine Antoni and Joey Orr, PLAT journal, Rice Architecture

Be a part of artist Janine Antoni’s environmentally embedded artwork at the KU Field Station. Offer your body to the land and let it teach you. Join the guided tours given by KU researchers and students on October 2, 3, and 8. TOURS HAVE LIMITED CAPACITY.

Tour guides include Helen Alexander (Ecology and Evolutionary Biology), Jim Bever (Ecology and Evolutionary Biology/Kansas Biological Survey), Dianne Durham (KU Medical Center), Bob Hagen (Environmental Studies), Kelly Kindscher (Environmental Studies, Kansas Biological Survey), Theo Michaels (Ecology and Evolutionary Biology), Sheena Parsons (Kansas Biological Survey), Peggy Schultz (Environmental Studies/Kansas Biological Survey), and Ben Sikes (Ecology and Evolutionary Biology/Kansas Biological Survey).

Tour dates and times

  • Sunday, October 2 at 1pm
  • Monday, October 3 at 10 am 
  • Saturday, October 8 at both 10 am and 1 pm

When going into a natural habitat, everyone assumes a certain amount of risk. Please wear closed-toed shoes and a hat and bring water to stay hydrated. We suggest covered ankles and even tucking long pants into socks, as well as long sleeves. We will provide sunscreen and bug spray, but also recommend showering directly after the event.

The KU Field Station is a 20-minute drive from the main KU Lawrence campus, but give yourself time to find your way on the dirt roads. Tours begin at the Roth Trailhead.

"Our encounter with the natural world calls us into presence. We become part of the land we traverse. It is a pilgrimage of sorts. One that’s destination is the contact of foot with earth. The contact of lungs with trees. The laying of prairie on the convex bowl of the retina at the back of the eye. The cicada’s song passing through the oval window to make our hammer, anvil, and stirrup do their staccato dance with the lyrical sway of our mammalian cochlear hair. All choreographed in their spiraling score." Janine Antoni

Project team: Janine Antoni, Suzan Hampton, Joey Orr, Sheena Parsons, Karl Ramberg, Keith Van de Riet


This project is a collaboration between the Spencer Museum of Art and the Kansas Biological Survey and Center for Ecological Research.