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Art can function beyond decorating highend real estate. It can be about intellectual stimulation, as evidenced by three discussions this week. And it can be about film and spoken word. Most but not all events are free, so it makes sense to call ahead before you go.

Lisa Tolbert, an associate professor of history at UNCG, is the featured speaker at Art for Lunch at the Weatherspoon Art Museum in Greensboro on Wednesday. She talks about images of the Yosemite Valley by Carleton Watkins and Eadweard Muybridge in the exhibit To What Purpose? Photography as Art and Document. The exhibit runs through April 8.

Collagist Paul Rousso gives a talk on Wednesday from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Green Hill Gallery for NC Arts. Rousso is one of four artists featured in the Word Maps exhibit, which runs through April 1.

The Weatherspoon teams up with the UNCG Sustainability Committee and WUAG to present the third annual Sustainability Short Film Competition on Thursday at 6:30 p.m.

High school students from across the state will compete in Poetry Out Loud, a poetry recitation program funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, at locations around Greensboro on Saturday. Katelyn Bellows of Northern Guilford High School and Danielle Winter of Early College of Forsyth are among the 31 students who will be competing. The competition begins at the downtown library at 10:30 a.m. Concurrent semifinals take place at the library and the nearby Greensboro Cultural Arts center at 11:45 a.m. And finals run at the Greensboro Historical Museum at 3:30 p.m.

Harry Titus, professor of art history at Wake Forest University, facilitates a gallery discussion related to A Genius for Place: American Landscapes of the Country Place Era, an exhibit at the Mary and Charlie Babcock Wing Gallery at the Reynolda House on March 28 at noon.

Dozens of galleries and museum in Winston-Salem and Greensboro have interesting ongoing exhibits in place. For example, Associated Artists of Winston-Salem features Exposures, a member exhibit of photography and art incorporating photography, through March 30. The Pastel Society of North Carolina Winter Exhibition runs through March 31 at Ambleside Gallery in Greensboro. And in High Point, Seven Decades of Art — 75th Birthday Exhibition celebrates artist Bob Timberlake at the Sechrest Gallery on the campus of High Point University through May 5.

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