Art, Knowledge, Action: How Columbia University Is Celebrating the Year of Water

00:08 The Year of Water is a campuswide, citywide initiative
00:14 to focus on all aspects of water--
00:18 the poetic, the symbolic, water inequity,
00:22 all the water issues that are facing the planet--
00:25 and to involve as many parts of the university as we can.
00:28 When I started asking who is working on water at Columbia,
00:33 I was amazed.
00:35 Water is an issue that's already taken up by so many parts
00:38 of the university-- institutes, centers, schools--
00:42 working on issues of law legislation
00:46 to change how water is distributed,
00:48 issues of the cleanliness of water,
00:50 the purity of water, water inequity in places like Flint
00:53 and now in Newark.
00:54 So Columbia just already is doing all that work.
00:59 How do you make all of that visible to the general public
01:02 and say, Columbia is not just theorizing, not just doing
01:06 research.
01:07 Columbia is doing research that is leading to action.
01:10 How do you make that visible?
01:12 And that's-- in my mind, that's what the arts can do.
01:14 We make stuff visible.
01:16 Artists have a unique capacity to do that--
01:18 to really affect how people feel,
01:21 how their minds work, but also how their hearts open
01:24 to these issues.
01:24 And that, I believe, really, is how consciousness and change
01:29 occur.
01:29 Daan Roosegaarde's Waterlicht will be a welcome to everyone
01:35 to participate with us in the Year of Water.
01:37 We can invite everybody from New York and say, come up.
01:40 It's three nights.
01:41 We have to wait till it's dark, and we
01:43 have to get all these buildings around us
01:45 to be dark, which is a big challenge in New York.
01:48 But it should be really beautiful.
01:50 And we can say to everyone, come and participate
01:52 in the Year of Water with us.
01:53 It's our open house to the Year of Water,
01:57 and it will happen at the end of October.