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Tuesday, June 18
The Indiana Daily Student

TEDxIndianaUniversity to host first live stage event in two years

The last in person TEDxIndianaUniversity conference, “Entropy,” was held at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater in 2019. The annual conference returns live on stage this spring with “Playground.”
The last in person TEDxIndianaUniversity conference, “Entropy,” was held at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater in 2019. The annual conference returns live on stage this spring with “Playground.”

Many of our first memories are running on the playground, following where our imagination takes us and experiencing the good and bad of childhood. These core memories often appear forgotten as we mature into adulthood. 

TEDxIndianaUniversity invites the IU and Bloomington communities to reflect on their childhood days with the seventh annual TEDx conference, “Playground.” The conference begins at 6 p.m. on March 4 at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater and features seven insightful speakers.

“The virtual landscape for our When A Tree Falls conference last year provided a lot of new opportunities to connect with our audience, and we are bringing some of those new aspects back with us in person,” TedxIndianaUniversity President Molly Carpenter said. “For example, Bloomington Delta Music Club will be joining us again for a live performance during intermission. There will also be various interactive activities, like a photo-booth, for the audience to engage with the theme and meet new people.”

Playgrounds represent the imagination, playfulness and excitement of being a child. Many first-hand positive, negative and discovery experiences occurred on the playground, and the conference speakers seek to answer if this period of childhood curiosity ever ended. The seven speakers are listed below.

Dr. Andreas Bueckle is a Research Scientist in the Luddy School of Informatics, Computing, and Engineering, studying data visualization to improve performance of virtual reality. 

Dr. Katie Dieter is the associate director of African and African American Studies at Stanford University, an artist and researcher whose work concerning race and gender focuses on the way visual and performing arts can be used as methods of knowledge production and resistance.

Heather Brizzi is a Navy veteran and Aviation Engineer who develops and coaches others to create strong, capable teams that excel in service and solutions enabled by technology. 

Quincy Owens is an Indianapolis-based sculpture artist, painter and teacher who turns the creativity and curiosity he experiences in his own life into vibrant works of art. 

Navkiran Natt is student-youth activist and media researcher who works between Punjab and Delhi, currently working as a co-editor of the Trolley Times, a newsletter covering India's ongoing farmers' movement. 

Max Mowitz is the Program Director at One Iowa, Iowa’s statewide LGBTQ advocacy organization. Max oversees organizational programming, direct service and community education via LGBTQ training. 

Jon Racek is multidisciplinary designer and faculty member at IU, founder of Play360, a nonprofit that trains organizations in the developing world to build their own playgrounds, and director of Printshop, a project to create a network of distributed manufacturing centers in Rwanda centered around 3D printing.

“Playground” is meant to give audience members and conference speakers the chance to reflect and walk down memory lane. Purchase tickets for this night of remembrance and rediscovery here or at the Buskirk-Chumley box office on the day of the event. All guests are required to wear masks and show proof of vaccination, or a negative COVID-19 test. 

“TED conferences are meant to inspire new ideas and share different perspectives, and leave attendees feeling like they’re seeing the world around them in a whole new light,” Carpenter said. “We at TEDxIndianaUniversity are thrilled to be able to bring this experience to the IU and Bloomington community” 

For more information about TedxIndianaUniversity and future events, visit

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