Yearly Archives: 2009

“Global warming is as much a cultural problem as a scientific or political one…”

Robin McKie, science journalist for The Observer, has been to see Steve Waters’ The Contingency Plan, and has noticed that that there is something significant happening across the arts:

Until now, scientists, journalists and politicians have dominated the debate about the threat of greenhouse warming. Many have fought well and brought a proper sense of urgency to the debate. However, it will be our writers, artists and playwrights who will finally delineate the crisis and explore in human terms what lies ahead. Only then can we hope to come to terms with our endangered world….Thus global warming is as much a cultural problem as a scientific or political one and deserves to be addressed through the activities of those who define our culture: our artists and writers.

These individuals will be the ones who reveal to us the kinds of lives we may lead in the near future – not just in physical, but in moral and social terms – as our planet heats up. In other words, we need an Orwell or a Huxley to help us define the terrible issues that confront us – and to judge from the recent efforts of Waters, McCarthy and McEwan we can have a fair amount of confidence that our artists and writers will deliver. Whether or not we choose to listen to them is a different matter.

“Writers and artists are getting warmer” by Robin McKie

Go to RSA Arts & Ecology

Mammut Reading – Ari Kletzky

 [display_podcast]

FROM ISSUE #2 SPRING 2009: LIVING WITH THE CITY
As the world’s population is increasingly concentrated in urban centers, how we choose to interact, develop and live in these cities will only become more important. With a variety of perspectives but by no means comprehensive, we hope this issue offers new ideas, directions and ways of understanding urban life.

Featuring contributions by Nicholas Bauch, Maya Brym, Ian Garrett, Charlie Grosso, Teira Johnson, Ari Kletzsky, Gerard Olson, Camilo Ontiveros, Nick Romaniak, David Snyder, Ashwani Vasishth, and Sue Yank. Cover design by Teira Johnson.

To Purchase a Print Copy or Download a PDF for Free visit:

http://www.mammutmagazine.org/

Green Sundays at Arcola

Dear friends

Our next Green Sunday takes place on 7th June, all are welcome, drop in anytime between 3pm – 7pm for tea and cake on the roof, activities with the Secret Seed Society, a swap shop, market, debate about ethical consumerism with Neil Boorman, Oxfam and Morgan Philips plus music, film and books!

Best wishes

Anna

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ON THE TRAIL OF A HALF MILE OF AL FRESCO INSTALLATIONS, SCULPTURES AND PERFORMANCES

NewTown has presented several of these “trail art” exhibitions in Pasadena over the last ten years. Here is the latest. Don’t miss it! Only open for two days and includes a great line up of site-specific art and nature experts and some new names. If you go and take pictures, please send me some or send a link to post on the ecologic blog.

NewTown Presents:

On the trail of A Half Mile of Al Fresco Installations, sculptures and performances

Karen Bonfigli & Andreas Hessing
Neil Fenn
Thadeus Frazier-Reed and Cassia Streb
Libby Gerber
John P. Hastings
Stanton Hunter
Huckleberry Lain
Richard Newton
John O’Brien & Cielo Pessione
Toti O’Brien
Miguel Olivares
Joseph Ravens
Karen Reitzel

June 6, 11:00 AM to 7:00 PM
June 7, 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM
Hahamongna Watershed Park (see below for directions)
Free
A stroll through art and nature

**Contact Information**
Richard Amromin, Artistic Director
info@newtownarts.org
www.newtownarts.org
(626)398-9278 or (626)240-7787 (show dates only)

Go to EcoArtSpace

Mammut Readings – Sue Yank

 [display_podcast]

FROM ISSUE #2 SPRING 2009: LIVING WITH THE CITY
As the world’s population is increasingly concentrated in urban centers, how we choose to interact, develop and live in these cities will only become more important. With a variety of perspectives but by no means comprehensive, we hope this issue offers new ideas, directions and ways of understanding urban life.

Featuring contributions by Nicholas Bauch, Maya Brym, Ian Garrett, Charlie Grosso, Teira Johnson, Ari Kletzsky, Gerard Olson, Camilo Ontiveros, Nick Romaniak, David Snyder, Ashwani Vasishth, and Sue Yank. Cover design by Teira Johnson.

To Purchase a Print Copy or Download a PDF for Free visit:

http://www.mammutmagazine.org/

Earth Matters on Stage: Ashden Directory Session


Friday morning at Earth Matters on Stage a small group of us piled into the video conferencing room in the Knight Library at University of Oregon to have a conversation with our interested counterparts in the UK. Our second, but certainly more ambitious, video conference of the day, it harkens back to the discussion surrounding travel, the arts and conferences that has been come up at the RSA here (also to be seen in our archives as part of our feed syndication).

From the Ashden Directory Blog:

Our DVD contribution to Earth Matters On Stage is now online. The interviewees address the question: ‘What Can Be Asked? What Can Be Shown? British Theatre in the Time of Climate Instability.’ (The interviews can also be watched individually.)

Quoting Rilke, Dan Gretton considers the value of quickening the pace of artistic response and cautions against the narcissism of frenzy.

On her allotment, Clare Patey explains how a year-long project changed the quality of the conversation amongst its participants.

In Brazil, João André da Rocha draws attention to the movement and shapes of rural life, especially popular dance, as a way of getting closer to Brazilian culture. (Transcript here.) 

From his office in the East End, Paul Heritage raises the question ofthose who are talked about rather than those who are talking.

With the Lake District as her backdrop, Wallace Heim asks how climate change differs from other political situations and how this might alter the ways in which theatre can be made.

Finally, Mojisola Adebayo performs the first moments of her play Moj of the Antarctic and wonders if some people in theatre think they’re above climate change.

You also can watch each person’s contribution as a separate sequence:
 

dan gretton
Dan Gretton

Dan Gretton, co-founder of PLATFORM 
responds to Mojisola Adebayo’s question, 
‘How far is art worth the damage?’ 
watch here
 

clare patey
Clare Patey

Clare Patey, artist and curator 
responds to Dan Gretton’s question, 
‘Can you talk about the role that slowing down and reflectivity plays, both in your creative process and your interaction with your audiences?’ 
watch here 

João André da Rocha
João André da Rocha

João André da Rocha, performer, producer, People’s Palace Projects and Nós do Morro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
responds to Clare Patey’s question, 
‘How can we reunite culture and agriculture through performance?’ 
A transcript is here 
watch here 

paul heritage
Paul Heritage

Paul Heritage, producer, director People’s Palace Projects and Queen Mary’s University 
responds to João André da Rocha’s question, 
‘What steps are you taking to descrease the impact of your life in the world?’
watch here 

wallace heim
Wallace Heim

Wallace Heim, co-editor Ashden Directory, academic 
responds to Paul Heritage’s question, 
‘How can we listen to, see, feel and learn from those who are talked about rather than those who are talking in the great climate change debate?’
watch here 
 

mojisola
Mojisola Adebayo

Mojisola Adebayo, artist, theatre-maker 
responds to Wallace Heim’s question, 
‘What would you keep from theatre and performance practice and what needs to change in response to climate instability?’ 
watch here 

The film is edited by Adam Clarke and directed by Wallace Heim.

‘What can be asked? What can be shown? British theatre and performance in the age of climate instabilit

More on Robin McKie’s article from The Observer

Well we have to be doing something right, because McKie’s article got this response from factually wayward Daily Telegraph young fogey James Delingpole, lambasting “eco-luvvies”. It’s a conspiracy! froths Delingpole:

What Cape Farewell does brilliantly, Delingpole fulminates, is breed wave after wave of high profile propagandists for the authorised Al Gore/James Hansen version of man made climate doom.

Um… yes. And? Delingpole (Ed. public school & Oxon), however, clearly thinks using culture to demonstrate things he doesn’t believe in is wrong.

Go to RSA Arts & Ecology

Earth Matters on Stage: Sustainable Practice

Many of the lectures here at EMOS are held at the very-new Hope Theater at the University of Oregon’s Miller Theatre Complex. Boom: there’s a big square fact to start the post off for you. But I’m going somewhere with it.

Right now, where the Hope would be a big black box is all full up with Set. The floor is painted in a curling desert-river pattern. Upstage is a forest of recycled wooden planks and juttings, a kind of grandpa’s-attic bamboo. In one corner is a platform with puzzle-piece innards: old bedposts, chairs and plywood fold over each other in a hefty collage.

It’s all for the stagings of the Festival’s top two prize-winning playsSong of Extinction and Atomic Farmgirl. But what was intended to represent a Bolivian forest and an American farm has come to represent the EMOS festival itself, both literally and figuratively: the set was  constructed with recycled materials.

Today’s sessions were sponsored by the Center for Sustainable Practice in the Arts. Led by Ian Garrett, they included presentations by Steve Mital, University of Oregon’s Director of Sustainability, PhD candidate (and EMOS Production Manager) Damond Morris, several eco-conscious designers, and several pioneers of a Sustainable Dramaturgy program at CalArts.

At this point: it’s day seven. Everyone in the room knows each other, at least by sight. We’re calling each other out in the audience: could you talk about your experience with . . . what’s your perspective on . . . and what begins as a formal presentation becomes a group conversation quickly and easily.

Inspired by Mike Lawler, here are a few questions asked in the course of the day (some got answered, some did not):

What is a “sustainable university”?

What is the impact of a theatrical lighting system?

Where in this stream can we reduce our waste?

What are the next steps in expanding/refining sustainable pedagogy?

How do we reframe our relationship to resources?

How can we implement what we believe in the art we create?

If your curiosity is piqued, I’d encourage you to visit the CSPA’s wiki for tools and nuggets of information. As to the rest, I leave you with Morris’ Five D’s of Design for Environment:

Design for Dissasembly. Design for Recyclability. Design for Disposability. Design for Reusability. Design for Remanufacture.

See you on the other side of  a recycled-wooden forest.

Go to the Green Museum

Mammut Readings – David Snyder

 [display_podcast]

FROM ISSUE #2 SPRING 2009: LIVING WITH THE CITY
As the world’s population is increasingly concentrated in urban centers, how we choose to interact, develop and live in these cities will only become more important. With a variety of perspectives but by no means comprehensive, we hope this issue offers new ideas, directions and ways of understanding urban life.

Featuring contributions by Nicholas Bauch, Maya Brym, Ian Garrett, Charlie Grosso, Teira Johnson, Ari Kletzsky, Gerard Olson, Camilo Ontiveros, Nick Romaniak, David Snyder, Ashwani Vasishth, and Sue Yank. Cover design by Teira Johnson.

Earth Matters On Stage: Process

It’s easy to get all cranial on the whole planet/culture relationship. It is, in fact, kind of scary not to.  Start learning with your body and not your brain, and well, that’s a one-way ticket to . . . this conference. Hem. Earth Matters On Stage. On the stage, bucko, not just in your brain. You better get moving.

For the first weekend here I was a part of the Art Culture Nature Working Group. Ten fellows were selected to lead half-hour workshops exploring the relationship between our craft and our planet. We were essentially encouraged to use the group as a brain trust– but more often than not, we relied on our bodies.

As a group, we moved. We formed sculptures about place, we followed impulses and rolled around on the grass. We took pictures of our surroundings, we worked with soil. All of this wildness took place under the guidance of the workshop leader (and the extreme limitations of time). We looked very silly sometimes, but learned a lot about process and structure.

Later in the week came a workshop about labyrinths, led by Paul Bindel and Justin Simms. I learned that labyrinths are used most commonly not in pursuit of bullheaded monsters, or for escaping Jack Nicholson, but as meditative tools.

There are labyrinths everywhere: 60 listed in Massachusetts alone. Their curling series of lines gives visitors a form in which to get lost, to walk through while their minds drift.  It’s a way to pay penance, to build serenity. It’s a task for your body that lets your brain go. Just follow the lines.

As a group we went out to a grove nearby the University of Oregon and built a labyrinth with wood gathered nearby. When it was done– spiraling sticky-sticks winding paths through the tiny trees– we each walked it. You could hear branches cracking and flutes playing and folks chatting as you wove your way around and around and around.  A great task for the body, a great chance to digest all the conference info and just go, go, go.

Go to the Green Museum