More than 100 years after the designation of national parks and monuments was established to protect lands, many parts of the Southwest continue to battle attempts to develop federal and state property. At the same time, wild lands are drawing record crowds to marvel at open space and geologic wonders. Why is park visitation at an all-time high as encroachment looms?

Bruce Aiken, NAU Honors artist in residence, will discuss “The Aesthetics of Conservation: Another Reason Why We Preserve Our Unique and Beautiful Lands” from 6 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, July 24, at the Museum of Northern Arizona. The presentation, part of the Summer Seminar Series, will touch on the value of visitor experiences inside national parks and why pure natural aesthetics holds our view and attention.

The NAU Honors Artist in Residence program is partially funded by APS.