culture/SHIFT ¦ two cities, two challenges

This post comes to you from EcoArtScotland

Creative Carbon Scotland’s culture/SHIFT programme has two events specifically focused on key issues for cities – Aberdeen and Glasgow:

  1. What can be done in post-industrial North Glasgow?
  2. How to speed up post-fossil fuel Aberdeen (i.e. move postively to the post-industrial)?

Aberdeen Green Tease: Cultural Practices in a Post-Fossil Fuel Aberdeen

with Nuno Sacramento (Director, Peacock Visual Arts) & Dr Leslie Mabon (Sociologist, Robert Gordon University)

Date Monday 20th March, 18:00 – 20:00

Venue: The Lemon Tree, 5 West North Street, Aberdeen, AB24 5AT

How can cultural practices address a post-fossil fuel future? Join Nuno Sacramento and Dr Leslie Mabon during Aberdeen Climate Week for a special conversation addressing the intersections between culture and sustainability in Aberdeen. Nuno and Leslie will discuss with the Green Tease network key questions about Aberdeen’s future social, economic and environmental sustainability, and the role of art and art institutions in creating an independent framework for addressing these concerns. Read more and register here.

Glasgow Green Tease: Whatever the Weather: Being Climate Ready in North Glasgow

Date: Wednesday 29th March, 18:30 – 20:30

Venue: The Grove Community Centre, 182 Saracen St, Glasgow, G22 5EP

What are the challenges and opportunities associated with climate change in North Glasgow? How can cultural practitioners contribute to climate change engagement strategies within the city’s communities and more widely? During this Green Tease we’ll be joined by the Glasgow Centre for Population Health and multi-disciplinary collective ice cream architecture to learn about the ‘Whatever the Weather’ engagement project in North Glasgow, exploring how communities can become more prepared and stronger in the face of climate change. We’re keen to use this opportunity to share experiences and learn from others working in similar engagement and intervention initiatives throughout the city. Read more and register here.

About EcoArtScotland:

ecoartscotland is a resource focused on art and ecology for artists, curators, critics, commissioners as well as scientists and policy makers. It includes ecoartscotland papers, a mix of discussions of works by artists and critical theoretical texts, and serves as a curatorial platform.

It has been established by Chris Fremantle, producer and research associate with On The Edge ResearchGray’s School of Art, The Robert Gordon University. Fremantle is a member of a number of international networks of artists, curators and others focused on art and ecology.

Go to EcoArtScotland

Catalogue Released on Collaboration of Refugee and Local Hamburg Artists.

One year ago we invited to the exhibition  ort_m [migration memory]  in the Frappant Gallery in Hamburg-Altona. Prior to this exhibition, we organized a studio where we – artists as well as artists in Hamburg – could work together for a period of four months. In this  Third Space  (Homi K. Bhabha) we have produced art works that were dealt with life experiences about, migration, globalization, and colonialism in the past and the present. A wide network of activists, helpers and art interested visitors. We would like to express our gratitude. Now we want to celebrate with you the fresh off the press  ort_m  catalog. Come and see – looking forward to meeting you!  

Catalog ·  Ort_m [migration memory]

Hannimari Jokinen, Dieu-Thanh Hoang (Hrsg./ed.)

In German and English, 140 pages / pages

EUR 24,00 Revolver Publishing, 2017  ISBN 978-3-95763-365-1  

More information on ORT_M


deLight Art Festival 2017 (March 23 – 27)

The deLight project is an environmentally-oriented light-art festival promoting sustainable lifestyles through contemporary art: we are establishing a new form of communication between eco-institutes, eco-initiatives, and audiences.

Every year, the WWF movement called Earth Hour brings communities from all around the globe together. During the initiative, people switch off their lights for one hour thus demonstrating their commitment to fighting climate change and raising awareness of environmental issues. Major cities of the world also contribute by de-energizing their landmarks including The Sydney Opera House, The Brandenburg Gates, and many others.

In 2017, deLight projects joins this worldwide action and provides all those interested in environmental problems with a chance to participate in it through our perspective. DeLight not only will disconnect from the electric network, but will generate electricity for a sustainable sound and light performance, adding a new dimension to Earth Hour and bringing the ‘non-electricity concept’ to a whole new level. Between 20:30 and 21:30 on March 25th 2017, in the forecourt of the club Ritter Butzke, a show with musical content by the sound-artist and composer Hugo Morales will take place. Light, sound, and tailor-made equipment will be our main tools for the performance in which the audience can also actively participate. Right afterwards, Ritter Butzke will invite our guests to a sustainable after party.

With the help of low-energy technologies, artists from all over Europe will highlight invisible natural phenomena such as the magnetic fields, temperature, vibrations, waves, and others. The exhibition will be held in ‘A Space Under Construction’ area located on the second floor of Ritter Butzke.

The third partner venue of the festival is Spektrum: a place aimed at presentation of technology-based artworks, science-focused events and futuristic utopias based on the principle “do-it-together-with-others”. At Spektrum, visitors will see Berlin’s live premiere of the AtomTone show by Czech artist Jiří Suchánek. And also a.melodie by Mélodie Melak Fenez, an experimental electronic music project, which is based on the responses plants have to their direct surroundings. Her work promotes complex interconnectivity between elements and presents Nature as a sentient being with inherent worth.

The deLight program also includes public talks with internationally renowned speakers experienced in the fields of green politics, sustainable lifestyle, ecology, eco-art, and light-art. Apart from that, film shows elaborating on environmental issues in unexpected contexts will be held.

And don’t forget to bring your old light bulbs – they will be carefully collected and recycled by the company Lightcycle.

Electric light has extended the boundaries of human capacity. Now, deLight is extending the boundaries of light.



23.03.2017 27.03.2017 deLight

#Earth Hour: 25.03 | 20:30

23.03 | 20:00 Live Show «A.Melodie» Melodie Melak Fenez, Spektrum

23.03 | 21:30 Live Show «AtomTone» Jiri Suchanek, Spektrum

25.03 27.03  Light-art Exhibition, A Space Under Construction

25.03 | 17:30 Public Talk, A Space Under Construction

25.03 | 20:30 Earth Hour: Sustainable Light&Sound Performace, Music by Hugo Morales

25.03 | 21:30 Afterparty, Ritter Butzke

26.03 | 19:00 Eco, Urban, Art Film Screening



Ritterstr. 26, Kreuzberg 10969                                                     


Ritterstr. 26, 10969 Berlin                                                          


Bürknerstraße 12, 12407 Berlin


Hugo Morales                                                                                               

Dmitry Gelfand, Evelina Domnitch

Jiri Suchanek                                                          

Akitoshi Honda

Raum Zeit Piraten                                                          

Damien Beneteau

Mélodie Melak  Fenez                                                          

Alexander Isakov

Curated by Dariya Susak


Dariya Susak (Curator), +49 176 292 47 165

Diana Kim (Assistent curator)

Elena Barysheva (Producer)

Susanne Felsberg (Producer) –

Emilia Stebulyanina (PR-Manager) 

For more information, please see the informational PDF

Open Call: In Other Tongues Now Accepting Registrations

In Other Tongues is now accepting registrations. Held at the beautiful Dartington Hall in southwest England from June 7-14 2017, it comprises an international gathering/conference from June 7-9 followed by a small-group residential short course from June 10-14.

Keynote speakers at the conference are Prof. Wendy Wheeler and poet Alyson Hallett; other presenters include sound artist Tony Whitehead, leading us into the sonic world of night-time and dawn-time; Felix Prater, Laura Cooper and Cherie Sampson helping us discover animal lives and our animal selves; Lori Diggle, Nancy Miller and others reminding us of the power of myth and story-telling and its continuing and new relevance; John Hartley will take us on to the river; Stephan Harding will be joining us to explore the science of interspecies communication. Others are materialists, guiding us to new insights into stone, field, water, fungi. We will encounter languages familiar and strange, and we’ll aspire to co-annunciate new forms of communication together through this unique gathering amongst the long, heady days of summer along the River Dart in some of England’s most beautiful countryside.

Download more details at or visit

The short course is led by Alyson Hallett and writer-illustrator Mat Osmond. Throughout the course visiting guests will (thus far) include acclaimed poet Alice Oswald and’s Director Richard Povall. Creative use of words form the core of the course along with image-making, voice and embodied exercises. We will work both indoors and outdoors as we deepen and attune more to ourselves and our experiences of place. Numbers are very limited.

Open Call: Inner Nature, Against the Tide 2017/18


until April 30th, 2017

1. Open call

In its third edition, INNER NATURE EXHIBITION has consolidated its reputation as an independent international exhibition about art, ecology and contemplation. Its interdisciplinary and decentralized vocation transcends the conventional form of audiovisual festivals to include other strategies for mobilizing and connecting very different territories around the world.

The intention is to contribute to a critical cultural movement that can help, through eco-social commitment, to create awareness and to invite collective participation. The first two editions of the exhibition took place in different art spaces in Spain, France, Finland, USA and Chile. Starting from this year, the show becomes biannual with the aim of widening and strengthening the interaction among all the art centers adhering to INNER NATURE NETWORK.

2. Theme

The third edition will revolve around the theme of water, an essential element for life. Water cycles and availability have been drastically modified by the effects of climate change and pollution, two anthropogenic phenomena that, among others, are causing alterations of ecosystems.

Moreover, the evocative potential of water and its antithesis – the aridity of the desert – is a recurrent element in the work of artists who re-signify traditional symbols and iconography from a more contemporary perspective. Our purpose is to collect some contemporary proposals that tackle this issue through an ecological approach.

3. Participants

Artists working both individually and collectively are welcome to apply. All submissions must be original. If they contain images whose copyright belongs to other authors, the participants must meet the national legislation on copyright.

4. Format

Artists may submit video artworks in formats such as AVI, MOV, MPEG, FLV, ASF, 3GPP, with a good screening quality in order for them to be shown on different types of screens and devices. Their duration must not exceed 5 minutes.

5. Submission of works

Artworks can be submitted until April 30th, 2017 through the online application form available at:

In order to ensure anonymity and transparency in the selection process, artists have to use a pseudonym. Moreover, the works must not contain any information regarding their authors. If the author’s name were visible in the opening or closing credits, it should be covered or pixelated before the submission of the work.

Therefore, an anonymous version of the work must be uploaded to an online repository (like vimeo, youtube, etc.) where it can be viewed at the highest possible quality. Artists should not use their personal youtube or vimeo account but must create a new one in which any reference to their identity is omitted. When completing the online form, artists will include the link and -in case of a private video-  the password to view the artwork. Files directly submitted to Inner Nature e-mail address or sent on physical formats (DVDs, USB, etc.) will not be accepted.

Selected artists will be notified by e-mail and will be asked to send the original work and personal details within a period of 15 days after the notification. If the organizers do not receive any information after this deadline, the artist and his or her work will not be included in the exhibition. The file submitted in this last phase must be exactly the same as the one that was uploaded online. Any change or re-editing of the work will result in exclusion from the show.

6. Evaluation criteria

The submitted videos will undergo a pre-selection process in which the works that do not meet the minimum technical requirements for a proper display on different types of screens and devices will be excluded. Then, a panel of experts will choose the works that proceed to the final selection according to the following criteria:

– coherence with the exhibition concept

– originality and innovation of the artwork

– formal and technical quality

– meaning and conceptual strength

The final selection will be carried out by the centers hosting the travelling exhibition. The centers’ coordinators will vote in full independence according to the above-mentioned criteria. Focus on the following thematic areas will be positively valued:

– Visibilization of eco-social issues related to water: global warming, waste, ice loss in polar areas, flooding of coastal regions, pollution and overexploitation of aquifers, etc.

– New ecological transition models giving priority to basic human needs over economic and business interests.

– Innovative formulas for effective community management of water resources.

– Critical analysis of the impact of large infrastructures for water exploitation and management.

– Opportunities for critical interventions of new media technologies for alternative approaches to water management.

– Symbolic and evocative aspects related to water, exploring the potential of contemplation for fostering empathy, interdependence and environmental care.

7. Selection results

The selection results will be published on INNER NATURE´s site in July 2017. Selected artists will be notified personally by email and will be asked to send the original work and personal details within a period of 15 days after the notification. In case of shared authorship, one artist shall act as a representative of the collective that created the submitted artwork.

The selected works will be divided into two sections:

  • Official section: it includes the most appreciated and best rated artworks. The total duration of this selection will be of approximately 30 minutes.
  • Variable section: it consists of highly-appreciated videos that were not included in the official section and whose total duration does not altogether exceed 20 minutes.

In case of a technical tie between two or more videos, the team of the Polytechnic University of Valencia will decide which artwork will be included in the show.

The official section is the core of the exhibition and will be shown at all art centers participating in the project. The official selection may also include the work of an artist of international renown invited by the organizers and whose research is particularly significant in relation to the theme of the show.

In addition, partners and collaborating centers have the possibility to adapt the selection of works to their specific needs and local concerns by adding one, some, all or none of the videos belonging to the variable section. All artworks belonging to the variable section will be included in the opening of the exhibition in Valencia, and will be granted visibility through INNER NATURE website, press releases, publications, social media, etc.

8. Travelling exhibition

The selected videos will be part of collective show which is scheduled to travel to several exhibition spaces in Spain and internationally. The opening of the show will be held in Valencia (Spain) at the IVAM Museum of Contemporary Art ( in November 2017, concomitantly with the Conference of the Parties (COP 23) to the UN Convention on Climate Change.

The exhibition will then travel to other places in Spain such as Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (Espacio Guia), Teruel (Human and Social Science Department), Salamanca (Espacio Zink), Gijón (PACA), Valencia (La Posta Foundation) and Las Tablas de Daimiel National Park (Cultura de Ribera). Furthermore, it will also be shown in other countries: at Climate, Sustainability & the arts (CSArts) at Temple University in Philadelphia (USA), at the Botanical Garden of Marnay-sur-Seine (France) and El Lobi in San Juan (Puerto Rico).

The organizers will make all the necessary effort to maximize exhibition opportunities during 2018 in order to give the widest possible visibility to the works. Artists will be informed about each exhibition and at the end of the travelling show will receive a certificate including all the venues.

9. Funding

INNER NATURE is a non-profit initiative that runs on volunteer work and depends on grants offered by public institutions related to the mission of the project. Artists agree to show their works in the exhibition without a fee and are offered international exposure. INNER NATURE team works actively to obtain funding: our aim is to create a network as a strategy to gain collective strength and visibility in order to influence public institutions and demand greater commitment to the field of culture and the environment.

Depending on the budget of each edition, our team will consider the possibility of supporting the people and/or the art centers involved in the project to cover expenses related to the acquisition of equipment, display rights, artists, technicians or cultural managers´ fees, etc.

10. Intellectual property rights 

The authors of the selected artworks will transfer their rights for free exclusively for the public screening of the videos in the travelling exhibition. Their authorship will always be acknowledged, contributing to the widest possible visibility of their work. Moreover, the videos will be included in the website of the show ( in the form video fragments or in their entirety, according to the authors’ will.

The organizers can use stills of the artworks or little fragments of the videos (less than twenty seconds) to promote the show through posters, press releases, the internet, etc., always mentioning the authors’ names in the photo credits.

If the videos contain fragments whose copyright belongs to other artists, INNER NATURE EXHIBITION is not responsible for the misappropriation or misuse of those images. The authors must certify that they hold the intellectual property rights of the submitted works according to the legislation in force.

11. Acceptance terms and conditions

Participation in this project implies understanding and acceptance of these terms and conditions in their entirety. The organizers hold the right to make changes and take initiatives, if they contribute to improve the quality and impact of the exhibition.

Download pdf


Visual Arts Residency / Sabhal Mòr Ostaig – National Centre for Gaelic Language, Culture and the Arts, Isle of Skye, Scotland.

Applications for the 2017 International  Jon Schueler Scholarship will be open on 27th February 2017.

The residency will take place from Mon 25th September –  Friday 15th December 2017.

Closing date for applications Monday 3rd April 2017,  5pm GMT


Applications are now being welcomed for the fifth Jon Schueler Scholarship, Visual Artist in Residence, an exciting international residency opportunity  to take place in Skye in the summer/autumn of 2017. In a unique international partnership between Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, the National Centre for Gaelic Language, Culture and the Arts (Scotland) and the Jon Schueler Charitable Trust, with support from the Royal Scottish Academy.  The successful applicant will have the opportunity to come and research, develop and produce work for 3 months in the dedicated artist’s studio in a spectacular setting overlooking The Sound of Sleat, the place which so inspired Schueler as an artist.

The Scholarship is open to international artists (including Scottish and UK) working to the highest level of contemporary professional practice in a visual medium and with a particular interest in landscape and the environment. Artists must have completed formal arts education at least 3 years previously.

The annual (2013 -2020) visual arts scholarship has been set up in celebration and in memory of the life, work and artistic influence of internationally renowned artist and abstract expressionist, Jon Schueler (1916-1992), in recognition of his very special relationship with the landscape and environment of the Sound of Sleat.

The aims of the residency are 1. to provide a visual artist working to the highest level of contemporary practice a period of research, development and production in a unique environment, 2. to promote Skye, The Gaeltachd and Scotland as an exciting, distinct and inspiring place to work for a contemporary artist, and to promote the exchange of ideas.

The residency is for 12 weeks from  Mon 25th September – Frid 15th December 2017.

The Artist will receive:

• a residency fee of £8,000 for the 12 week period

• an allowance of £500 for materials

• provision of an artist’s studio with ICT support

• reasonable travel costs of a single return trip to undertake the residency in Skye (12 weeks) met in full as part of the scholarship

• accommodation on campus

The Scholarship will enable a visual artist to come and work in and from the large Visual Arts Studio, based within the FÀS Centre for the Creative and Cultural Industries, Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, in a rich and multi-disciplinary arts environment. The Stiùidio Ealain is a custom-built working Visual Artist studio. Perched high over the rocky shoreline and looking out over the Sound of Sleat and Knoydart, its generous space includes double height ceiling (in part), outside access, sink room, storage and blackout blinds.

In addition to the provision of the generous studio, the Artist will have access to our sound recording studio and extensive reference library with two collections of  national and international significance – the ‘MacCarmaig’ and ‘Celtica’ Collections, together creating one of the most important collections of antiquarian books of Gaelic and related materials in existence anywhere in the world. It may also be possible, by special arrangement, to have access to a range of film, editing and post-production facilities on site.

Artists will be given the opportunity during their residency to engage with the Gaelic Language and Culture and also have the opportunity to meet with other artists working in different art forms: film, literature, drama and music. There will also be opportunities to meet with artists working within the local area. This is hoped will encourage the exchange of ideas.

“ I am so grateful to be given this opportunity of discovery, that has opened my eyes to a new way of looking. I will treasure this experience. It will remain with me and influence my work for the rest of my life.” Takeshi Shikama, Jon Schueler Artist in Residence 2013.

“Being given the opportunity to work for three month in the unique context of Gaelic Culture and Language, based on the breathtakingly beautiful Island of Skye, and surrounded by supportive and engaging people, has opened new routes in my work for me. This residency is without doubt one of the most stimulating I have ever been involved in.”

Helmut Lemke, Jon Schueler Artist in Residence 2014.

   Sabhal Mòr Ostaig Background Notes

   Visual Arts Studio Plan

   About the Jon Schueler Scholarship

   Scholarship Guidelines



Mon 27th Feb  2017 – applications open  for SJS 2017, web-link live

Mon 3rd April 2017, 5pm GMT – Closing date for applications

Wed 20th April 2017- shortlisted artists invited for interview

Frid 26th May  2017 – Interviews , Royal scottish Academy, Edinburgh/ and via skype

Frid 9th June 2017 – announcement of successful candidate with press release


Frid 1st September  2017 -applications open  for SJS 2018, web-link live

Mon 16th Oct, 5pm GMT 2017 – Closing date for applications

Thurs 2nd Nov 2017 – shortlisted artists invited for interview

Friday 24th Nov  2017 –  Interviews, Royal scottish Academy, Edinburgh (tbc)/ and via skype

Frid 8th Dec 2017 – announcement of successful candidate with press release


Frid 31st Aug 2018 -applications open  for SJS 2019, web-link live

Mon 15th Oct, 5pm GMT 2018 – Closing date for applications

Thurs 1st Nov 2018 – shortlisted artists invited for interview

Friday 23rd Nov  2018 –  Interviews, Royal scottish Academy, Edinburgh (tbc)/ and via skype

Frid 7th Dec 2017 – announcement of successful candidate with press release


Frid 30th Aug 2019 -applications open  for SJS 2020, web-link live

Mon 14th Oct, 5pm GMT 2019 – Closing date for applications

Thurs 31st Oct 2019 – shortlisted artists invited for interview

Friday 22nd Nov  2019 –  Interviews, Royal scottish Academy, Edinburgh (tbc)/ and via skype

Frid 6th Dec 2019 – announcement of successful candidate with press release

“Ambulatory Knowing”: Architecture, Access, and the Anthropocene

This post comes to you from EcoArtScotland

This post is jointly authored by Holly Keasey and Fiona P McDonald (Bio below), another resident on the Santa Fe Art Institute’s Water Rights Programme.

By ‘becoming knowledgeable’ I mean that knowledge is grown along the myriad of paths we take as we make our ways through the world in the course of everyday activities, rather than assembled from information obtained from numerous fixed locations. Thus it is by ‘walking along’ from place to place, and not by building up from local particulars that we come to know what we do.
‘Footprints through the weather-world: walking, breathing, knowing’ – Tim Ingold (2010)


Walking is generally assumed as a basic mode of transportation. However, walking (or any movement based on ability) through a place when undertaken as a collaborative tactic finds its way into becoming something else – a way of knowing and doing. Walking for Holly is a way to get lost and yet find what she did not know was already embodied knowledge through making connections between her feet, this place and that which she carries with her from other places. The practice of walking is something she shares with Fiona, who uses walking as a methodology central in her anthropological and collaborative work. By embracing anthropologist Tim Ingold’s logic of “ambulatory knowing”, Holly and Fiona set off on foot and offer a narrative of their shared visual observations from almost 20miles of walking, particularly considering how architecture may be tied to accessibility in New Mexico during the Anthropocene, our human-made geological epoch.

72 hours after arriving in Santa Fe, a group of Santa Fe Art Institute (SFAI) Residents headed to learn more about local fabrication facilities. While we left our residency on the campus compound by car to arrive in the industrial area where these facilities are located, we then left this industrial zone on foot. We set our destination to be the downtown plaza, a major tourist site. According to Google Maps, it was going to be a mere 4.2mile walk. The intent of our journey on foot was to get a better handle on what we perceived to be the urban sprawl of Santa Fe. In this instance in Santa Fe, we are both tourists and temporary residents/researchers in-place to carry out work that contributes to global conversations around water. To know the terrain, its waterways, and its urban nuances is critical to our work, knowledge we felt was best acquired through walking through place where we will be for several weeks and months.


As we moved beyond the industrial area, a space that appears to be in the process of revitalization with a range of art centers tucked around each corner, we arrived at Agua Fria Street, a main traffic artery that draws commuters to and from the downtown plaza. Unaware at this point that we were undertaking an ethnography on foot, what has since resulted is the realization that we were not only becoming geographically oriented, but we were witnessing the socio-economic divides that the main transportation arteries create in Santa Fe, observations that now inform core research questions during our tenure in Santa Fe.

We crossed Agua Fria to consider a brief toilet break at Frenchy’s field. However, we pressed on without stopping. Unbeknown to us, had we abandoned the path set out by Google Maps and embraced Holly’s approach of wandering, our first impressions of the socio-economic divide of Santa Fe would have been very different. We might have followed the Santa Fe River trail (see our observations below on that walk, taken more recently) that moves pedestrians and cyclists through more affluent communities. Yet we continued on the path of Aguia Fria Street where we observed what appeared to be makeshift wooden and wire fences guarded by a variety of dogs from frantically barking Pit Bulls to a jack-in-a-box Pekingese who warned residents of our presence on the pavement. Our perception of the American ideal of independence and property ownership played out along this single 3 mile stretch, with individual properties reflecting a range of values from ornamentation to fortification, to clustered communities off the beaten path.

Holly pausing in her footsteps to look at cluster dwelling in Santa Fe, New Mexico

Holly pausing in her footsteps to look at cluster dwelling in Santa Fe, New Mexico

As we pressed closer to downtown in the space between the intersectional roads of St. Francis Drive and South Guadalupe Street an economic divide became apparent. The adobe vernacular we had seen in the previous three miles, often in disrepair, was now well-maintained and occupied by art galleries, restaurants, schools and homes with low-fences so that passersby could see the manicured yards with local vegetation accompanied by rock installations. It felt to us that the community along Agua Fria Street is undergoing a constant compression of gentrification from both ends. We wondered, when squeezed so far, where will this community go and what policies are driving property shifts in Santa Fe?
The following Saturday, to escape the campus compound once more and locate Santa Fe in the greater expanse that is New Mexico, we abandoned our feet and took the highway seventy miles North following the Rio Grande to Taos. The main area of Taos holds many similarities to Santa Fe, with adobe-style housing and dramatic shifts in socio-economic situations radiating outwards from the central tourist orientated plaza to the leisure mecca of Ski Valley. Yet beyond the town, and truly off the beaten path, is the ‘Greater World Earthship Community’ – a 633 acre subdivision containing nothing but earthship style homes. Here we ventured on foot to explore what we could of this biotecture community.

Holly taking steps in learning about biotecture in New Mexico.

Holly taking steps in learning about biotecture in New Mexico

Sample structures of the Greater World Community of Earthships, New Mexico

Sample structures of the Greater World Community of Earthships, New Mexico

Investing $7 each to enter the Earthship Visitor Center to learn about structures, materials, etc., (too complex to go into here) our conversation drifted to the concept of “sustainability” in the anthropocene. We found ourselves mesmerized by the exclusivity of the community and what the front-end costs are for participating in this lifestyle. As one of three Earthship communities in New Mexico, and part of a larger network across the US that began in the 1970s, one can join this community and purchase a newly built structure for just over $1.5 million US Dollars (as we were told in the visitor center). Playing in here to what Van Jones terms the “eco-elite” (2007).

On our third excursion off the campus compound in the three weeks since arriving, we decided to explore the Santa Fe Rail Trail multi-use pedestrian system, the elusive path we did not know to take during our pause at Frenchy’s field on our first walking odyssey. In walking this trail for 8 miles, we, again, observed disparate socio-economic communities, this time divided by the parched bed of the Santa Fe River. Again, closer to the main roads where the Santa Fe Trail crosses over, communities similar to that along Aguia Fria Street are visible. Edge deeper along the trail network and communities framed by high fences appear as they conceal well-maintained adobe homes with renewable energy sources on their roofs and water catchment practices in their backyards.

Sample of Sustainable Energy on a private residence

Sample of Sustainable Energy on a private residence

What we discovered in the act of ambulatory knowing in Santa Fe is that development and accessibility to secure, sustainable lifestyles appears to be exclusive. The individuals and families to whom it appears inaccessible are those being compressed by brownfield and urban gentrification, or hugging major roadways. By prioritising economic growth, and then the environment (as a capitalised resource) over social equality, there is something in our current understandings of sustainability that grows mainly out-of-sight in the interstitial spaces of policy, urban planning, and environmental consciousness. Something that can become knowledge through curbside learning and walking. It is in this action of walking and visual observation where we find the questions we need to ask in our own work about policy, law, regulation, and planning as our work here develops with each passing day and the paths we find ourself walking down.

Photos by Fiona P. McDonald


Ingold, Tim. 2010. “Footprints through the weather-world: walking, breathing, knowing.” Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute: S121-S139.

Jones, Van. 2009. Beyond Eco-Apartheid. Available at:–beyond-ecoapartheid

Welch, Bryan. 2009. “Earthships: The Power of Unconventional Ideas.” Available at:

Taos and the Greater World Earthship Community. Homepage:

Bio for Fiona P. McDonald, PhD. (Anthropologist, Curator)

Fiona P. McDonald is the 2016-2019 Postdoctoral Researcher at Indiana University—Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) Arts and Humanities Institute. She is also a 2017 Water Rights Resident at the Santa Fe Art Institute. Fiona completed her PhD (2014) in the Department of Anthropology at University College London (UCL) in visual anthropology & material culture. Her dissertation is entitled Charting Material Memories: a visual and material ethnography of the transformations of woollen blankets in contemporary art, craft, and Indigenous regalia in Canada, Aotearoa/New Zealand, and the United States. This project was undertaken as both an historic and contemporary visual and material ethnography of the material nature and transformations of woollen (trade) blankets that were produced in the United Kingdom since the seventeenth century. Her work addresses both historical and contemporary uses of woollen blankets through a direct examination of the pluralistic histories that things and objects have when re-worked and recycled by contemporary artists and customary makers in North American and Aotearoa New Zealand. Fiona is currently translating this research into a book project.

Fiona is also the co-founder of Ethnographic Terminalia Collective (ETC) (est.2009), an international curatorial collective that curates exhibitions at the intersections of arts and anthropology. ETC have curated and organized exhibitions and workshops across North America (Philadelphia, New Orleans, San Francisco, Montreal, New York, Austin, Chicago, Denver, and Vancouver) where they aim to move academic research beyond the academy through public engagement.

Research interests are: Water, Energy studies, Indigenous material and visual culture, repatriation, oral histories, contemporary Indigenous art, curatorial theory, performance theory, and museum studies.


ecoartscotland is a resource focused on art and ecology for artists, curators, critics, commissioners as well as scientists and policy makers. It includes ecoartscotland papers, a mix of discussions of works by artists and critical theoretical texts, and serves as a curatorial platform.

It has been established by Chris Fremantle, producer and research associate with On The Edge ResearchGray’s School of Art, The Robert Gordon University. Fremantle is a member of a number of international networks of artists, curators and others focused on art and ecology.

Go to EcoArtScotland

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Stop the Presses! It’s Community Supported Paper at Fresh Press

This Article Appeared First on Paperslurry 

What if handmade paper was at the farmer’s market, along with your favorite tomatoes and freshly baked loaf? Or, maybe there’s a snazzy notebook made from prairie grass paper in your CSA box.

You’re not daydreaming—community supported paper is a reality, thanks to Fiber by Fresh Press.


Fresh Press is a hand papermaking studio at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Founded by Eric Benson and Steve Kostell in 2012, this microbrewery of paper researches agri-waste fibers for possible use at the commercial scale (read this overview here).

Fresh Press, handmade paper posterHand papermaking from farm and agricultural plants at Fresh Press

Driving on the highway through the center of Illinois, through blurry stretches of cornfields, the idea of using farm fiber starts to make sense. Fresh Press experiments with farm fibers such as cornstalks and eggplant vines, instead of forests, opening up the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help American farmers.


Fiber by Fresh Press is the newest project stemming from their mission.

You might already be familiar with Community Supported Agriculture (CSA), an alternative economic system for local food distribution (individuals subscribe for a share of the farm harvest, and then receive yummy fresh food at regular intervals).

Take the same idea, but replace the food with handmade paper made from nearby soy stalks, tomato vines, prairie grasses, and recycled paper scrap.

Fibers by Fresh Press, hand made papers

Currently, Fiber by Fresh Press offers drawing papers, notebooks, and sketchbooks, packaged for students and professors on campus (they hope to expand the project to the public soon). The papermakers are students at the University of Illinois who also grow and harvest the plants at the Student Sustainable Farm.


Serendipitously, I had a chance to stop by the studio to meet co-founder Eric Benson and also Natalie Smith, the Fresh Press studio manager. They were kind enough to give me a tour, take a peek through the flat files, and poke around the farm.

Handmade paper at Fresh Press

Fresh Press papermaking studio flat filesHandmade paper by Fresh PressFresh Press at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champagne

The papermaking studio is nicely outfitted with a David ReinaHollander Beater, hydraulic press, and an enviable group of moulds and deckles.

Fresh Press Papermaking Studio, moulds and deckles, Reina Hollander Paper Beater, Hydraulic Paper Press

Student Sustainable Farm

Student Sustainable Farm

Imagine having this alternative for buying paper—a delivery of art papers and journals from your local hand papermaker. Excited yet?

by May Babcock


The CSPA Quarterly, our print and digital publication on issues related to Sustainable Development and the Arts, is now offering advertising space! Support this excellent publication and the CSPA while reaching a unique audience.

Ad space purchased in the digital and print versions include cross-platform promotions our homepage.

Download the CSPA Advertising Guidelines to see rates and options. To submit a request for space, fill out this form or email





Arts & Sustainability 2016 Residency Report Published

This post comes from Creative Carbon Scotland

“CCS’s Arts & Sustainability Residency is becoming a major intersection point for artists and the most significant thinkers in sustainability.” Chris Fremantle, independent arts producer, writer & researcher

In September 2016, eight artists were invited to participate in CCS’s annual Arts & Sustainability Residency, working with facilitators Jan Bebbington (Professor of Accounting and Sustainable Development, Director, St Andrews Sustainability Institute) and Lex ter Braak (Director, Van Eyck Institute, Maastricht, Netherlands), and partnering with Cove Park.

Over an intensive three-day programme, participating artists were asked to reflect upon and develop their understanding of how their practices connected with themes surrounding the burgeoning field of the Anthropocene, and the wider cultural shift towards a more environmentally sustainable society.

Key questions and themes discussed included:

  • The contested starting points of the Anthropocene and the social, political and creative implications contingent on each of these;
  • The cultural responses that an understanding of geological deep time provokes;
  • The historical role of the artist in society;
  • Developing robust theories of change which can provide practical hope in addressing the transition away from unsustainable practices.

Download the Arts & Sustainability 2016 Report.

Arts & Sustainability 2016 Report Published 1

As well as supporting the development of artistic practices in Scotland, the Arts & Sustainability Residency plays an important role in shaping CCS’s thinking and work. Key learning points stemming from the residency on CCS’s role included:

  • Actively developing and brokering relationships artists and sustainability experts and institutions, helping to set the right terms for the ways in which artistic practices can contribute to environmental sustainability contexts;
  • Supporting and facilitating commissioning opportunities for the development of new artistic
    work in this area with other cultural organisations;
  • Continuing to create opportunities for learning and knowledge/practice exchange such as the residency and Green Tease events;
  • Making the most of artists’ curiosity and readiness for the unknown within the context of
    the challenges surrounding issues such as climate change.

CCS created a space where artists were not under pressure to produce new work, however, this hothouse of ideas organically gave way to inspiration, learning and forward planning. This allowed for a thorough reflection on creative practice and I left the residency feeling enriched, reassured and, in question of my working practices – all alongside a new, and growing, understanding of what my practice is about. I found [the Arts & Sustainability Residency] to be a transformative learning experience and I am excited to see where these new connections and understandings will lead.” Kathy Beckett

The post Arts & Sustainability 2016 Residency Report Published appeared first on Creative Carbon Scotland.

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