Linda C. Gorski, HAS President and Co-Chair
Houston Welcomes You!
“Houston” was the first word spoken by Neil Armstrong when Apollo 11 landed on the moon. Founded in 1836 by two brothers on Buffalo Bayou, and considered by many as the energy capital of the world, the city also has over 500 cultural, visual, and performing arts organizations and over 40 colleges and universities.
And we think Houston, the Bayou City, is a perfect place to host the 86th Annual Meeting of the Texas Archeological Society. This year’s gathering of the clan will be held at the OMNI Hotel and Resort Westside in Houston October 23 – 25, 2015. This terrific venue is located at I-10 and Eldridge Parkway, well out of the normal flow of Houston traffic. With its lush greenery and tranquil three acre lake, the AAA Four-Diamond Omni Houston Hotel at Westside is a tropical paradise. The moment you step into the atrium lobby, a peaceful water garden welcomes you with exotic foliage and colorful fish. The Café on the Lake encapsulates the perfect dining experience and the Black Gold Bar offers casual saloon-style décor and specialty drinks – and it’s okay to throw the peanut shells on the floor!
The OMNI offers more than 25,000 square feet of flexible meeting space, all located on one floor and the guests have easy access to 25 separate function rooms as well as the spacious 9,800 square foot Texas ballroom. There is a fully equipped fitness center and an outdoor heated swimming pool and whirlpool and 614 complimentary parking spaces. The 400 guest rooms and suites are beautifully appointed– and our TAS Annual meeting room rate of $105 per night cannot be beat! You can check out the TAS page on OMNI’s website at http://www.omnihotels.com/hotels/houston-westside/meetings/texas-archeological-society-86th-annual-meeting
For those who want to venture out to some of Houston’s premier shopping experiences, you are literally just minutes away from the Town & Country Mall and Memorial City Mall - and Katy Mills Mall (and a huge Bass Pro Shop) is just 10 miles away where there are over 200 additional stores and restaurants. And if you want to spend more time in Houston, our world class museums and attractions – the Houston Museum of Natural Science, the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Space Center Houston - and many more – await your visit! Your TAS Annual Meeting visitors packet will contain maps and information about all these attractions.
Your hosts for this year’s meeting are the Houston Archeological Society, the Fort Bend Archeological Society and the Brazosport Archeological Society. Sue Gross is in charge of the Silent Auction and Raffle and has already started collecting some pretty special items which we’ll highlight in the summer TAS Newsletter. Remember, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure!!! When you’re doing your spring cleaning, keep our silent auction in mind and contact Sue Gross if you have auction or raffle items to donate.
Our biggest news to date is that we have booked two speakers of international renown for our Public Forum and Banquet. Marilyn Johnson, author of Lives in Ruins: Archeologists and the Seductive Lure of Human Rubble will be our Public Forum Speaker on Friday night, October 23rd. If you have not yet read her book, run don’t walk to your nearest bookstore or Google it on Amazon.com. Here’s a quote from one of the reviews of her book:
Despite the ominous title of Marilyn Johnson’s LIVES IN RUINS: Archaeologists and the Seductive Lure of Human Rubble, this experiential memoir finds life amid the rubble of archaeology. Johnson doesn’t take up a trowel and spade to shine light on the long-buried treasures of the ancient world. Instead, she concentrates on reconstructing an anthropological portrait of the most mysterious character of all: the Archaeologist.
Marilyn Johnson’s Lives in Ruins is an absorbing and entertaining look at the lives of contemporary archaeologists as they sweat under the sun for clues to the puzzle of our past.. What drives these archaeologists is not the money (meager) or the jobs (scarce) or the working conditions (dangerous), but their passion for the stories that would otherwise be buried and lost.
Doesn’t this describe all of us??? Her book also highlights the friendships and teamwork she experienced in all the archeological projects she worked on while writing the book.
Our banquet speaker on Saturday night, October 24 will be Dr. Jean Clottes, internationally renowned rock art expert and former General Inspector for Archeology at the Ministry of Culture in France. He has spoken to TAS in the past on the cave art in France but his presentation this year will highlight entirely new research that he has been conducting on Rock Art and Tribal Art in India.
According to Clottes, thousands of painted sites can be found in India, most dating from 10,000 years ago. The exciting message from Jean’s presentation will be that because most of the rock art in India is in deep jungles, its cultural and natural contexts have been well preserved. Unlike most of the world’s rock art, in Neolithic/Chalcolithic sites, cattle play a major role in Indian rock art imagery as they were people’s riches.
Clottes research with the Korkus, Gonds, Kols and Bhils tribes proves that traditional arts are still in use and that ceremonies with offerings are still going on in some of the painted shelters, a fact that had gone unnoticed until now. Clottes and his associate, Meenakshi Dubey-Pathak have published a book in French on their research entitled “Des Images Pour les Dieux. Art rupestre et Art Tribal dans le Centre de L’Inde”, 2013, Arles, France. (Translated: Images for the Gods: Rock Art and Tribal Art in Central India)
We hope you will join us for what promises to be a terrific annual meeting this coming October. If you have any questions please contact event Co-Chairs Linda Gorski and Kathleen Hughes. We look forward to seeing you soon!
TAS Book Festival
The Local Arrangements Committee (LAC) has indicated that there is an outstanding lineup of authors for the 2015 TAS Annual Meeting Book Festival (Book Signing). Seven authors have already committed, leaving only three slots. If you have published or know someone who has published a recent book or has one that will be published before the meeting and would like to exhibit, contact Steve Davis or any other member of the LAC (email addresses are listed on the 2015 Annual Meeting home page) as soon as possible.
Annual Meeting Contacts