Yearly Archives: 2020

Tiny Coronavirus Stories: ‘I never wanted to be here again’

By Caridad SvichCecil CastellucciGary GarrisonSally Moss

Reader-submitted stories of the COVID-19 pandemic, in no more than 100 words. Read past stories hereSubmit your own here.

WINDOW

this is how it started the rush of feeling the quick disdain the aching bleeding thingness of being seeping through all, all this now is different, deferred, but here, and in this here we wonder what here is this, blanketed in anxiety, stirred in its own fear, stoked by unease, yet also here, still, the ever present solace of you, still here, and you on the other side light on wondering how you manage these days to get up. perhaps we will gather here like this for a long time. window to window. a look passes through us. still. here.

— Caridad Svich (New York, New York)

A look out the window to other windows.

* * *

ALL POSSIBLE WORLDS

All possible worlds have come a-courting…

Hell is visiting the dying or bereaved, tapping shoulders in medical wards and theatres of war. Despair is bedding in where abusers sleep, and in quarters missing houseroom or headspace.

Meanwhile, heaven swears blind we still have options – a chance of world-neighborliness, and a shot at jamming ecocide back in the box Pandora cracked open.

For now, I live a scaled-down life and give thanks, bonding and blending with the girl who read alone in her bedroom decades ago, trying to tell what she makes of it all.

— Sally Moss (Liverpool, United Kingdom)

Distanced.

* * *

THERE’S LIFE IN MY KITCHEN

I’ve been a lifelong plant killer. But riding this shelter in place solo as I am, I have turned to cooking and not wanting to waste anything. Somewhere deep inside me, an ancient almost witchiness arose. Looking at my kitchen scraps I see potential. So, making use of abandoned pots from plants I’d previously killed, I clear a space in the garden and start nurturing seeds and regrowth. With all this time to really care for them, and plenty of sun, life springs forth. There is growth, as much for them as for me. We are saving each other.

— Cecil Castellucci (Los Angeles, California)

(Top photo: The seedlings on my window sill.)

* * *

HERE AGAIN.

I never wanted to be here ever again. I never wanted to give terrifying power to the words negative and positive again. I never wanted to feel that fear again when you heard a friend was positive, was isolating away, was not being seen, was frightened for their future. I never wanted to see doctors or nurses at a loss again. I never wanted to see a President turn his face away from all that was fact again. I never wanted to experience so much loss. I never wanted to be here again, but… here we are.

— Gary Garrison (Provincetown, Massachusetts)

To begin.

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This series is edited by Thomas Peterson. One of the editors of Artists & Climate Change, he is also a theatre director and researcher whose work focuses on the climate crisis.

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Artists and Climate Change is a blog that tracks artistic responses from all disciplines to the problem of climate change. It is both a study about what is being done, and a resource for anyone interested in the subject. Art has the power to reframe the conversation about our environmental crisis so it is inclusive, constructive, and conducive to action. Art can, and should, shape our values and behavior so we are better equipped to face the formidable challenge in front of us.

Go to the Artists and Climate Change Blog

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New films from VeloCommunities embedded artist project released!

During this year’s Earth Day Week, we’re excited to share five short films created during the VeloCommunities embedded artist project – celebrating inspiring stories of community-led action on climate change in Glasgow.

Last year we supported theatre-maker Lewis Hetherington and filmmaker Geraldine Heaney to work with Glasgow cycling charity Bike for Good and produce a film about VeloCommunities. VeloCommunities was the 1000th project to receive funding support from the Scottish Government’s Climate Challenge Fund.

During Climate Week 2019, we launched ‘Let’s Go! A film about cycling and climate change’, sharing the stories of the amazing staff, volunteers and participants (as well as the artists themselves), involved in breaking down barriers to cycling in Glasgow’s Southside and inspiring community-led action on climate change.

‘Spokes People’ films

The artists have now produced a series of short films, telling the stories of five individuals’ cycling journeys, from what inspired them to get started to the different benefits they derive from choosing to go by bike.

Domestic transport makes up nearly 30% of Scotland’s total carbon emissions, with road transport accounting for 73% of total transport emissions.* Therefore, it is vital that our cities and rural environments support more sustainable options such as walking and cycling as well as public transport.

These films show that climate action is not only good for the planet, it brings multiple positive benefits to society, including tackling social inequalities, improving physical and mental health, and building more sustainable communities. We hope you enjoy them!

‘Spokes People’ from Geraldine Heaney on Vimeo.

The full length version of ‘Let’s Go!’ can be enjoyed on the Keep Scotland Beautiful YouTube channel.

Find out more about the VeloCommunities embedded artists project.


*Scottish Government Climate Change Plan Third Report Proposals Policies 2018

This embedded artist project is part of Bike for Good’s VeloCommunities Project, which is funded by the Scottish Government’s Climate Challenge Fund.

Please get in touch with Creative Carbon Scotland’s culture/SHIFT Producer Gemma.lawrence@creativecarbonscotland.com if you wish to find out more about this project or more about other projects that support collaborations between artists and environmental initiatives.

The post New films from VeloCommunities embedded artist project released! appeared first on Creative Carbon Scotland.

New project announcement: Velocommunities 1000th Climate Challenge Fund project        New project announcement: Velocommunities 1000th Climate Challenge Fund project 1

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Creative Carbon Scotland is a partnership of arts organisations working to put culture at the heart of a sustainable Scotland. We believe cultural and creative organisations have a significant influencing power to help shape a sustainable Scotland for the 21st century.

In 2011 we worked with partners Festivals Edinburgh, the Federation of Scottish Threatre and Scottish Contemporary Art Network to support over thirty arts organisations to operate more sustainably.

We are now building on these achievements and working with over 70 cultural organisations across Scotland in various key areas including carbon management, behavioural change and advocacy for sustainable practice in the arts.

Our work with cultural organisations is the first step towards a wider change. Cultural organisations can influence public behaviour and attitudes about climate change through:

Changing their own behaviour;
Communicating with their audiences;
Engaging the public’s emotions, values and ideas.

Go to Creative Carbon Scotland

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Opportunity: micro-residencies for visual artists

TONIC ARTS, part of Edinburgh and Lothians Health Foundation, seeks seven visual artists for a unique series of micro-residency opportunities in response to COVID-19.

TONIC ARTS is a vibrant, award-winning programme that creatively enhances the healthcare environment of NHS Lothian, UK.

They are currently seeking visual artists to create new work documenting observations, experiences, reflections and insights of living through the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown.

This opportunity is open to Scottish visual artists, across all ages and stages of careers.

Deadline: 10am, Monday 1st June

Residencies will run from June through to August.

Visit the TONIC ARTS website for the full brief and application form.

The post Opportunity: micro-residencies for visual artists appeared first on Creative Carbon Scotland.

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Creative Carbon Scotland is a partnership of arts organisations working to put culture at the heart of a sustainable Scotland. We believe cultural and creative organisations have a significant influencing power to help shape a sustainable Scotland for the 21st century.

In 2011 we worked with partners Festivals Edinburgh, the Federation of Scottish Threatre and Scottish Contemporary Art Network to support over thirty arts organisations to operate more sustainably.

We are now building on these achievements and working with over 70 cultural organisations across Scotland in various key areas including carbon management, behavioural change and advocacy for sustainable practice in the arts.

Our work with cultural organisations is the first step towards a wider change. Cultural organisations can influence public behaviour and attitudes about climate change through:

Changing their own behaviour;
Communicating with their audiences;
Engaging the public’s emotions, values and ideas.

Go to Creative Carbon Scotland

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DEADLINE MAY 31 for ecoconsciousness CALL FOR ARTISTS

eco consciousness is the thematic of the inaugural ecoartspace online juried show for our artist and art professional membership levels. The show will be blind juried by Eleanor Heartney, distinguished New York art critic and author.

Approximately 100 works will be selected for exhibition. Three billboard awards will be given to artists whose work will be presented in the Midwest for three months leading up to the General Election on November 3. The exhibition will be presented as a digital catalogue (PDF), designed to accompany the online show, with an introduction by ecoartspace curators Patricia Watts and Amy Lipton.

eco consciousness, which is defined as showing concern for the environment, is a broad thematic to offer inclusivity. We, however, are encouraging work that is sensitive to the spiritual and the feminist aspects of our human relationship with nature.

Artworks selected will be featured online beginning September 1 and will be promoted in our monthly e-Newsletter and our social media channels.

Entry fee is $35

APPLY HERE NOW

READ BARBARA ROSE INTERVIEW WITH HEARTNEY l BROOKLYN RAIL

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ecoartapace ecoartspace is a nonprofit platform providing opportunities for artists who address the human/nature relationship in the visual arts. Since 1999 they have collaborated with over 150 organizations to produce more than 40 exhibitions, 100 programs, working with 400 + artists in 15 states nationally and 8 countries internationally. Currently they are developing a media archive of video interviews with artists and collection of exhibitions ephemera for research purposes. Patricia Watts is founder and west coast curator. Amy Lipton is east coast curator and director of the ecoartspace NYC project room.

A project of the Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs since 1999

Go to EcoArtSpace

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Tiny Coronavirus Stories: ‘The gaps feel smaller’

By Grace GelderKristina HakansonMadeline Snow TypadisMark Rigney

Reader-submitted stories of the COVID-19 pandemic, in no more than 100 words. Read past stories hereSubmit your own here.

A CENTURY LATER, WE UNDERSTAND

Her grandchildren complained when their YiaYia nagged them to wear a sweater and socks, even in the summer. “You’ll get cold,” “be careful,” and “stay home,” she would say worriedly.

She was four when her mother and a quarter of her village in northern Greece died of the “Spanish Flu.” She was with her mother when she died, begging her to wake up.

For her, there was a direct link between catching a cold and potentially dying.

A hundred years later, when a cough or sneeze fills us all with dread and fear, we finally understand.

— Madeline Snow Typadis (Newton, Massachusetts)

YiaYia Nia’s handiwork.

* * *

DRIVE TIME

I begin a three-day road trip from Evansville to Rochester (and back) in order to retrieve my older son (and all his collegiate stuff). Along the way, I stop to visit my parents. I refuse to go inside their house. I insist that we not hug. We visit via a long walk, instead. The Hampton Inn I stay at that night, three stories high, has all of five cars in the parking lot. Overhead interstate signs read “Stop the Spread: Save Lives” and “Stop the Virus: Stay Home.”

— Mark Rigney (Evansville, Indiana)

Even highway signs have their transitional moments.

* * *

REMOTE TEACHING

Week four of the quarter and I’m teaching remotely because of the virus. But today I’m driving to school to retrieve my office chair. I could drive this in my sleep and that’s the problem – we’ve all been sleeping, all been profoundly disillusioned. Empty parking lot. Keycard, hum, greenlight, in. Mild disinfectant. Floors! Shiny blue, like the sky in the wrong place. Here’s 204, my eerie empty classroom, and my black office chair. I should go but I don’t. I linger, staring at my posters of Shakespeare and Jack London, literary terms in a row above my whiteboard: metaphor, irony, paradox.

— Kristina Hakanson (Scottsdale, Arizona)

Home office with cat.

* * *

FARAWAY FRIENDS ARE CLOSER

I call my new Indian friends on WhatsApp. We aren’t all busy like we said we would be, and we didn’t expect to still feel so close to each other. We anticipated distance after I finished my residency, but now we know where each other are; all sharing an experience – a common fear. I tell them about my walks, how I swapped peacocks for pheasants and vampire bats for buzzards, how I have to wear jumpers to go outside now. They laugh. We have different concerns, but we can all agree that it’s a good time for making art.

— Grace Gelder (Ironbridge, Shropshire, United Kingdom)

(Top photo: The gap feels smaller.)

______________________________

This series is edited by Thomas Peterson. One of the editors of Artists & Climate Change, he is also a theatre director and researcher whose work focuses on the climate crisis.

———-

Artists and Climate Change is a blog that tracks artistic responses from all disciplines to the problem of climate change. It is both a study about what is being done, and a resource for anyone interested in the subject. Art has the power to reframe the conversation about our environmental crisis so it is inclusive, constructive, and conducive to action. Art can, and should, shape our values and behavior so we are better equipped to face the formidable challenge in front of us.

Go to the Artists and Climate Change Blog

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Happy Ecosystems by sparklebliss

Collect and complete ecosystem sets while learning about connections in nature. Happy Ecosystems is appropriate for players ages 7 and up and is intended for groups of 2-6 players.

The game includes facts about 10 endangered or threatened animals and the plants, animals, and environmental factors they depend on for survival. It introduces concepts of interdependence, adaptation, conservation, and protection.

More Information and to Download (Name your own price)

Tiny Coronavirus Stories: ‘What will the next generation say?’

By Carol DevineJack MapstoneJulia LevineMelissa Kaplan 

Reader-submitted stories of the COVID-19 pandemic, in no more than 100 words. Read past stories hereSubmit your own here.

GROWTH

This morning I was working for a long-time client, an elderly widowed woman. A breezy, uneasy day. Usually embraced by a hug and a “glad to have you back,” today I stood at the edge of the driveway and yelled a quick “how are you,” but no sign of embrace, physical or emotional. A sadness rushed over me as I pulled last year’s rotted stems from the recently thawed tundra, the same rush we’ve all felt in many parts of our lives, a disconnect. Underneath, as layers of leaves were removed, budding stems. Underneath, hope.

— Jack Mapstone (Stillwater, Minnesota)

Gloomy lilac skeletons come once more.

* * *

WHAT MATTERS?

My family’s tradition, second-night Seders. No family this year but the Seder plate is prepared: lamb bone, egg, charoset, bitter herbs, karpas, lettuce. Salt water. Three matzoh. Wine. And…the Haggadah? Not the simplistic Maxwell House. Not the Manischewitz version with more God mentions than this agnostic can handle. The one my dad and I carefully edited, maintaining the essential meaning, allowing all gathered to thoughtfully, joyfully participate. Two years since he died. Three since a family Seder. What matters? I hear him questioning, challenging us. Freedom. Freedom from slavery matters, for all creatures and for our planet.

— Melissa Kaplan (Lansing, Michigan)

The family Seder plate

* * *

WE ARE WE AND THE DRC

My colleague asked if anyone had an empty home for a medical couple and their baby returning from Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo, so they could do two weeks quarantine. We circulated a callout. I didn’t know who was coming or where they’d stay. But on a virtual work call they appeared and told a harrowing story – shortage of personal protective equipment, causing moral distress for humanitarians wanting to respond, tensions rising, planning for palliative care versus survival for a number of coronavirus patients. They also told of gratitude for colleagues, home, and hope – local mask-making, grit, the human drive to help heal, anywhere, everywhere.

— Carol Devine (Toronto, Ontario, Canada)

Brazzaville, Kinshasa, Congo River. Courtesy: NASA, International Space Station, June 6, 2003.

* * *

ON ALL OTHER NIGHTS

We greet each other at the virtual Seder table – in turn, as the video chat allows.

“How are you? Who’s in New York?”

Four generations gather with food and wine, in celebration of our freedom as Jewish people.

An imperative that we continue imagining and building a world where all are free.

Unique meaning in this current crisis, a rehearsal for the climate crisis.

We say, “Next year in Jerusalem,” nodding to the Israelities who wandered the desert for forty years after Moses led the liberation.

Now we say, “Next year in person.”

What will the next generation say?

— Julia Levine (New York, New York)

Top photo: A Cohen/Levine Virtual Seder, photo by Rich Cohen (Lanesborough, MA).

______________________________

This series is edited by Thomas Peterson. One of the editors of Artists & Climate Change, he is also a theatre director and researcher whose work focuses on the climate crisis.

———-

Artists and Climate Change is a blog that tracks artistic responses from all disciplines to the problem of climate change. It is both a study about what is being done, and a resource for anyone interested in the subject. Art has the power to reframe the conversation about our environmental crisis so it is inclusive, constructive, and conducive to action. Art can, and should, shape our values and behavior so we are better equipped to face the formidable challenge in front of us.

Go to the Artists and Climate Change Blog

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