Author Erica Olsen will read and sign copies of Recapture, her debut book of short stories, at the Anasazi Heritage Center on Sunday, Oct. 14 at 1 p.m. Museum admission is free all day on lecture days.
Olsen writes about archaeologists, museum curators, hikers and pothunters men and women engaged in preservation and destruction, figuring out how to live, work, remember and love in a changing world.
In Olsens stories, a curator preserves silences in glass jars, tourists visit a larger-than-life-size replica of the Grand Canyon, and a bookmobile full of Jane Austen novels trundles through the deserts of southeastern Utah.Archaeology and history, love and loneliness, identity and preservation all wind through the collection, blurring the lines between the natural world and the world we create.
According to Olsen, one of her perennial themes is the relationship between my writing and my professional work in museums. She wrote some of her stories while working to curate collections at the Anasazi Heritage Center, according to a written release.
My mission was to preserve artifacts, but also to keep them accessible to researchers and to the public. Artifact collections allow people to tell stories about the past. Storytelling is, for me, a bridge between worlds.
A great museum exhibit can make you see the world differently. I hope my fictional tales about archaeology and the West will do the same.
Olsen has lived in the Four Corners for years. She is Hollywood-born and of Korean and Scandinavian heritage, a graduate of Stanford, Harvard and the University of Montana MFA program. Her work recently received the 2011 Barthelme Prize for Short Prose (for Grand Canyon II, included in Recapture). Olsens essays and stories have appeared in High Country News and other magazines.
Recapture is published by Torrey House Press. Reviews are available at www.recapturestories.com.
This event is part of the annual Four Corners Lecture Series, sponsored by the Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, Fort Lewis College, Cortez Cultural Center, Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, Mesa Verde Museum Association, and the Hisatsinom Chapter of the Colorado Archaeological Society. Additional support is provided by ARAMARK/Mesa Verde Company and KSJD Dryland Community Radio. The 2012 theme is Crossroads of Arts and Cultures. Lectures are free and open to the public.
The Bureau of Land Management Anasazi Heritage Center is the headquarters for Canyons of the Ancients National Monument. It includes museum galleries, a theater, and a hiking trail. The facility is open seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. through October 31. For more information, contact the museum at 882-5600 or go to www.co.blm.gov/ahc.