Artists, scientists, humanities scholars and conservationists will discuss issues surrounding biodiversity at the three-day symposium organised by The University of Western Australia's SymbioticA.
Titled Unruly Ecologies: Biodiversity and Art, thesymposium will explore the possibilities and difficulties of the diversity of life through critical investigations in art, ecology and action.
Symposium convenor Dr Perdita Phillips said the science of biodiversity had made great advances but it had also revealed that ecosystems were complex and changing.
The symposium begins on Friday, November 26 with a biodiversity tour of the galleries at the Western Australian Museum and runs until Sunday, November 28.
Other sessions will be held at the Art Gallery of Western Australia, UWA and Lake Clifton, where SymbioticA's long term project Adaptation is based.
"We have to make decisions without having absolute certainties, and those decisions need to involve the whole community," Dr Phillips said.
SymbioticA director Oron Catts said that at a time when technologically induced biodiversity seemed to be talked about as a viable way of replacing natural biodiversity, we needed cultural scrutiny of such claims.
"South-west Western Australia is home to one of the world's 34 biodiversity hotspots, and the only one in Australia," Mr Catts said. "This means that we are not only at high risk from biodiversity loss but are also in a prime location to benefit from an increased awareness. 2010 is the International Year of Biodiversity, and so is a poignant time to discuss the issues surrounding biodiversity and explore ways of investigating this issue through art."
Speakers at the symposium include: Professor Bruce Clarke, from Texas Tech University, UWA's Associate Professor Anas Ghadouani, Professor Timothy Morton, from University of California, Dr Lesley Instone, from Newcastle University, British artists Bryndís Snæbjörnsdóttir and Mark Wilson, artist and SymbioticA Director Oron Catts and Dr Phillips, UWA research associate and artist.