Arts And Humanities

Information sessions | Imagining Natural Scotland

This post comes to you from EcoArtScotland

Imagining Natural Scotland, aiming to thoroughly think through the relationship between the arts and the natural environment, is holding a series of sessions which promise to be more interesting than the title suggests. Sessions are to encourage collaborations applying for the awards.

Each session will feature,

  • Detailed information on how to apply to the Imagining Natural Scotland fund.
  • A presentation, open discussion and Q&A on a particular aspect of Natural Scotland’s representation in the arts and popular culture; featuring guest speakers from both the environmental and creative sectors.
  • Time for networking and meeting potential collaborators.

For example Dundee feature presentations on cross-disciplinary collaboration from Tentsmuir Artist in Residence, Derek Robertson and Sophie Eastwood the Red Squirrel Project Officer for Fife Coast and Countryside Trust; Inverness will feature Professor Paul M Thompson and artist and composer, Mark Lyken, and curiously Oban will feature Professor Laurence Mee director of Scottish Marine Institute (SAMS) and the designer Daniel Mee.

Dumfries will feature artist, author and planner, Timothy Collins and Reader in the Institute of Geography, Emily Brady on why arts and humanities informed by science are uniquely situated to explore future imaginaries and potential virtues where nature is concerned.

From what we understand one of the key issues for the Imagining Natural Scotland team is that the visual arts (and applied arts?) are perceived to be very engaged with the environment compared to music, dance and poetry, though we’re certain that there are those that would dispute this perception.  The point is that visual and applied artists interested in this programme might want to partner up with other art forms.

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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Time of the Clock, Time of Encounter

This post comes to you from EcoArtScotland

If practitioners of environmental and ecological arts have become expert in the critique of spatial politics and practices, should they also be able to develop and use critiques of time?

ecoartscotland is a partner in an AHRC funded workshop programme entitled Time of the Clock, Time of Encounter. This forms part of a cluster of research projects focused on the theme ‘Connected Communities’.

The ‘Time of the Clock, Time of Encounter’ project has been put together by:

ecoartscotland, Woodend Barn, Encounter Arts and Holmewood School are community partners.

The aim of the project is to destabilise assumptions about temporality and to activate alternatives. The group believe that the arts and humanities have particular forms of knowledge around temporality that are of potential use to communities (e.g. those directly involved as well as in the wider sense).

There are some key experiences related particularly to the arts which are known, but perhaps not activated as tools of critique, such as ‘nunc stans’ (the experience of time standing still), ‘flow’ time when the process takes over all sense of time. But we should also note Helen Mayer Harrison and Newton Harrison’s use of ‘the urgency of the moment’, that sense of a particular time when culture is maleable, when new stories of futures can be imagined. In contrast Elaine Scarry’s discussion of pain and the loss of any sense of time is also relevant.

Perhaps one of the key cultural projects which focused on temporality was Futurism, and we now have its corollary, the Slow movement.

Amy Lipton recently posted a question to the ecoartnetwork asking artists to highlight projects which are open to the public during June 2012. Her intention was to make this information available to the Outreach Officer at the Environmental Protection Agency for inclusion in a calendar associated with the White House Initiative ‘Great Outdoors Month’.

The question is of course driven by ‘The Time of the Clock’ (or at least the calendar), but the example provokes reflection on temporality in relation to ecoart projects.

We might offer a number of other questions which might relate to clock/calendar as well as encounter:

How long did the project take?

What experience of time does the work encourage in the minds of those involved?

Ecoart projects tend to assume the wider agency of other species and systems – what is their relationship with temporality?

Did any of the artists in any way attempt to use creative strategies to affect community sense of temporality?

Are these projects ever ‘closed’ in other than a practical sense of visiting them?

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

BiodiverCITY for 5 x 5 in Washington D.C.

This post comes to you from EcoArtSpace
Amy Lipton curator for ecoartspace NY has been busy working on BiodiverCITY, her curatorial public art project for 5 x 5 in Washington D.C. opening on March 24th. Hosted by the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities, 5 x 5 includes five international curators who have each selected five artists to participate. The 25 temporary public art projects will encompass all 8 wards of D.C. and the stated goal of the project is to activate and enliven publicly accessible spaces and add an ephemeral layer of creativity and artistic expression to neighborhoods across the District. The 5 x 5 will be presented in conjunction with the National Cherry Blossom Festival, one million plus people are expected to take part in the nation’s greatest springtime celebration.

March 2012 marks the one-year anniversary of the devastating earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan. The cherry blossoms are a symbol in Japanese culture that indicates rebirth. The Festival commemorates the 100-year anniversary of the gift of trees from Tokyo to Washington, DC.

Amy has chosen to work with five artists whose focus is on biodiversity both in scientific and cultural terms. Biodiversity refers to the wide variety of ecosystems and living organisms including humans, animals, plants, their habitats and their genes which all contribute to life on Earth. These five artists all take a participatory approach and intend for their projects to engage, inspire and raise awareness about various issues related to the natural environment in the urban setting of Washington D.C. The common goal of these works is to connect people and communities aesthetically by bringing attention to the sometimes hidden relationships between city dwellers, urban nature, human and non human life forms.

If we wiped out insects alone the rest of life and humanity with it would disappear in a few months  – E.O. Wilson, biologist and author of BioDiversity

Tattfoo Tan will create p:ARK, (March 24 – July 20) a large-scale, walkable labyrinth in an open grass field at Yard’s Park along the Anacostia riverfront. The field will be planted with weeds, grasses and whatever volunteer plants grow and left unmowed. Just before the 5 x 5 opening the field will be mowed into a labyrinth pattern. Visitors to the site can walk into this path and consider the differences and relationships between public space, cultivated lawns and weeds. Tattfoo wants his audience to understand that we are all part of nature and migration (including weeds and invasive plants) is a natural process that will continue regardless of the changing positions on immigration. In this way his art hopes to inspire thinking about ways we can all live together in a world that is getting smaller as population increases and people move around globally.

The term weed in its general sense is a subjective one, without any classification value, since a “weed” is not a weed when growing where it belongs or is wanted. Indeed, a number of “weeds” have been used in gardens or other cultivated-plant settings. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Weed

Tattfoo received a 2010 “Annual Awards for Exellence in Design”, Public Design Commission of the City of New York, for the Rehabilitation of the Bronx River Art Center. He received a public art commission from Percent for the Arts and New York School Construction Authority at PS 971, Brooklyn, New York for his permanent wall installation “SOS (Sustainable Organic Steward) Pledge” in 2010. Tattfoo’s work has been shown by various institutions including; The Queens Museum of Art, The City of New York Department of Cultural Affairs, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, Fashion Institute of Technology, Pratt Institute and Project Row Houses, Houston, TX. Tattfoo received a Proclamation Award from City Council, The City of New York for his for his effort, service and artistic contribution to the community.

Let’s change our aesthetic of what is beauty and stop trying to tame nature by poisoning it. Ultimately, we are slowly killing ourselves in the name of cohesiveness, dare to be different and embrace diversity. – Tattfoo Tan

Natalie Jeremijenko will suspend her work, B Bridge (March 25 – July 25) to help butterflies cross obstacles in a busy urban street location. The B Bridge project creates a quiet spectacle that facilitates the lifestyle and environmental services of these beautiful and popular urban cohabitants and demonstrates how we might re-imagine our infrastructure to account for the diverse nonhumans with whom we share territorial resources. Butterflies will bounce along the bridge which makes use of enticing flowering vegetation to safely guide them over a heavily trafficked intersection in order to connect to fragments of habitat. The presence of different species of butterflies and moths is vital to maintain and preserve the biodiversity in urban areas. They represent a significant proportion of pollinators, thus maintaining the diversity chain and gene transfer between plant species.

Urban contexts, surprisingly, are islands of biodiversity — or as we like to spell it: biodiverCITY. This characteristic of our urban systems is perhaps the most critical in producing a healthy and resilient urban future that is robust to climate destabilization and ecological transformations. – Natalie Jeremijenko

Natalie Jeremijenko is an artist whose background includes studies in biochemistry, physics, neuroscience and precision engineering. Jeremijenko’s projects which explore socio-technical change have been exhibited by several museums and galleries, including MASSMoCA, The Whitney Museum and Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt. A 1999 Rockefeller Fellow, she was recently named one of the 40 most influential designers by I.D. Magazine. Jeremijenko is the director of the environmental health clinic at NYU, Assistant Professor in Art, and is affiliated with the Computer Science Dept.

Embracing the international status of Washington, DC as the capital of the United States, Chrysanne Stathacos will present a public art project titled Natural Wishing (March 20- July 20) to enable participants to connect with “wishing actions” from around the world. The viewing public will be able to take a journey using their own cell phone while riding a city bus or by tying a wish to a tree at various locations throughout DC. Printed wishes will be available to be hung on trees or kept, in celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the National Cherry Blossom Festival. Some of the included trees in this project can be seen at: The Textile Museum, Sasha Bruce, and The Hill Center/ Old Navy Hospital. One can participate in this project by leaving a wish by voice or text, accessed by mobile phone to a QR code or phone number seen on printed posters. Over 200 of these posters will be installed on DC Metro buses from March 20 – April 30th.

Wishing rituals are personal performances; blowing, throwing, speaking, drinking, singing, holding, to name a few. In today’s challenging landscape, one finds the need for hope and wishing as fundamental in order to create a better world . People’s need for hope cannot be underestimated, as often hope provides us a deeper understanding of our mutual interdependence, and results in our world flourishing . – Chrysanne Stathacos

Toronto and NYC based Chrysanne Stathacos’ interdisciplinary art practice draws on photography, printmaking, book-works, video, installation, public art, and participatory interaction. She aims to make new connections between cultures, historical periods, technologies, and environmental issues, which mirror the human processes of change, hope, healing and mortality. Stathacos has exhibited her work extensively in museums, galleries, sculpture gardens, and public spaces internationally including The Wish Machine, presented by Creative Time in Grand Central Station, New York City. She received a 2001 award from the Japan Foundation, for The Wish Machine project, which enabled her to do creative research in India and Japan for six months.

Love Motels for Insects (March 24 – June 10) is an outdoor light installation by Brandon Ballengée for the Smithsonian National Zoological Park. The Love Motel uses ultra-violet lights on enormous blank fabric to attract insects and creates an opportunity for public interactions with nocturnal arthropods, which are not often seen. The sculpture is fabricated in the form of giant dragonfly wings and is intended to construct situations between humans and non-human life-forms. Versions of Ballengée’s black-light sculptures and public nocturnal field-trips have taken place in Asia, Europe, and the Americas. At each location the arthropods leave traces and create abstract pheromone paintings on the fabric surface.

Exploring the boundaries between art, science and technology, Brandon Ballengée creates multidisciplinary works out of information generated from ecological field trips and laboratory research. Ballengée has collaborated with scientists, members of the public and students to conduct environmental research and ecological artworks. His transdisciplinary works involve collaboration with participants from diverse age, economic, educational, and ethnic backgrounds. His artworks have been exhibited in museums, galleries, sculpture parks and public spaces in Australia, Asia, Europe and the Americas. He currently is finalizing his Ph.D. through a collaborative program between the University of Plymouth, England and Hochschule für Gestaltung in Zürich, Switzerland. He is a Professor at the School of Visual Arts in New York City.

Working and communicating with diverse groups is vital to the creative process. It allows the works to function as site-specific- not only in geographic terms, but also culturally. This intellectual exchange also permits the work to grow in novel directions guided by group ideas instead of a solitary artist’s hand — like organisms evolving to changing environmental stimuli.
-Brandon Ballengée

Habitat For Artists is a collective project that uses the idea of the artist’s studio as a catalyst for mutual engagement between artists and communities. The “habitats” are small, temporary, 6 by 6 foot art studios installed at a variety of locations. HFA invites local and member artists for periods of residency to work in these small studios. The studios are made from recycled and reclaimed material and are reused for each new iteration of the project. From March 20 – April 27th, HFA at THEARC in D.C.’s 8th Ward will invite D.C. artists and local youth, after school programs and community groups to participate on weekly projects both inside and outside the studio to explore creative expression in a collaborative setting with a changing member of the HFA team each week including artists Simon Draper, Matthew Slaats (Freespace), Chere Krakovsky, Todd Sargood, Michael Natiello, Michael Asbill, and Jessica Poser. An exhibition of works created throughout the HFA residency will be exhibited at the end of April at THEARC’s Corcoran Gallery through the Corcoran Art Reach program.

These intimate work spaces not only ask artists working in them to explore their creative needs, BUT also act as a metaphor for our OWN domestic needs. How might we be more creative about our consumption of materials, our use of energy and land? Could we be doing more with less, yet still create a vibrant, relevant society and culture? – Simon Draper, founder of Habitat for Artists.

The four other selected curators for 5 x 5 are: Richard Hollinshead, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, UK; Laura Roulet, Washington, DC; Justine Topfer; San Francisco, CA and Steve Rowell, Culver City, CA

http://www.the5x5project.com/25-citywide-public-art-installations-to-be-unveiled-in-partnership-with-the-national-cherry-blossom-festival/

TWITTER: @thedcarts @CherryBlossFest
FACEBOOK: /thedcarts /CherryBlossomFestival
WEBSITE: dcarts.dc.gov nationalcherryblossomfestival.org

 

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

Plasticities Sciences Arts

This post comes to you from Cultura21

“Plasticities Sciences Arts” is an association based in France, operating at the transdisciplinary crossroads of art and science. As expressed by its president, Marc-Williams Debono, “the PSA research group aims at opening new fields of interaction between sciences, arts and humanities. The group has its origins in 1994 when it established a Transdisciplinary network of researchers focusing on the nature of evolutionary processes. The identity of the group is founded on both knowledge and human experience as on the suggestion of the concept of plasticity. The latter is considered to be the basic principle underlying the organization of any life form, art or idea.”

The group’s website contains valuable online resources including news items, activities and publications, and the online Journal  Plastir, which is on open access (i.e. freely accessible). The latest issue of Plastir (25) was released in December 2011.

The website (in English and in French) of “Plasticities Sciences Arts” and Plastir is accessible at: http://plasticites-sciences-arts.org/

Cultura21 is a transversal, translocal network, constituted of an international level grounded in several Cultura21 organizations around the world.

Cultura21′s international network, launched in April 2007, offers the online and offline platform for exchanges and mutual learning among its members.

The activities of Cultura21 at the international level are coordinated by a team representing the different Cultura21 organizations worldwide, and currently constituted of:

– Sacha Kagan (based in Lüneburg, Germany) and Rana Öztürk (based in Berlin, Germany)
– Oleg Koefoed and Kajsa Paludan (both based in Copenhagen, Denmark)
– Hans Dieleman (based in Mexico-City, Mexico)
– Francesca Cozzolino and David Knaute (both based in Paris, France)

Cultura21 is not only an informal network. Its strength and vitality relies upon the activities of several organizations around the world which are sharing the vision and mission of Cultura21

Go to Cultura21

EMOS Call for Papers & Proposals | Earth Matters on Stage

Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA – May 31-June 3, 2012

CALL FOR PAPERS AND PROPOSALS

Ecology is at the heart of burgeoning creativity and interdisciplinary scholarship across the arts and humanities. This Symposium, together with the concurrent EMOS Playwrights’ Festival, invites artists, scholars and activists to share their work, ideas, and passions with one another and with the larger community who attend the Festival.

We welcome creative and innovative proposals for workshops, round-tables, panels, working sessions, installations, or participatory community gatherings that explore, examine, challenge, articulate, or nourish the possibilities of theatrical and performative responses to the environmental crisis in particular, and our ecological relationships in general. We encourage proposals that go beyond a recitation of ideas or positions, and instead bring presenters and participants together as they engage the driving question of how theatre has or might function as part of our reciprocal relationship with ecological communities.

Possible topics for exploration include: land and body in performance; representations of bioregionalism; eco-literacy; representation of/and environmental justice; green theatre production; old cultural narratives/new stories; indigenous performance; community-based performance/ecological communities; sensing place/staging place; the ecologies of theatrical form and/or space; animal representation; and application of ecocriticism to plays, performance and culture.

Please email a one-page (250 word max.) proposal and/or abstract by November 1, 2011 to:

Prof. Wendy Arons
School of Drama ~ Carnegie Mellon University
warons@andrew.cmu.edu

Please include:

  • Type of session & title;
  • Your preferred type of space (classroom, theatre, studio, or outdoors);
  • Time-length (60 min; 90 min; half-day);
  • Ideal or maximum number of participants;
  • Short bios of presenter(s).

For more information about the EMOS Festival and Symposium at Carnegie Mellon University in 2012, see http://pages.uoregon.edu/ecodrama/.

AHM’s State of Play, Dundee

This post comes to you from EcoArtScotland

AHM‘s final State of Play event takes place in Dundee on Saturday 1 October.

As with previous events it will include a number of ‘One Minute Manifestos’.  One of these has emerged through a collective process of writing initiated by Tim Collins and contributed to by a number of participants in the Values of Environmental Writing programme at Glasgow University.

Tim has asked me to post the manifesto and authorship, and to encourage anyone who broadly supports the manifesto, and is at the State of Play symposium, to come forward and share in the speaking of the manifesto.

“Who are we? Though the origins of this manifesto are the Values of Environmental Research Network conversations, this document is inclusive of all those who feel that the arts and humanities have a vital role in the effort to mitigate and prevent environmental damage.”

The Anthropo-scene Evolution

2011 saw the culmination of avarice that necessitates naming the human impact on all earthly things. In response we wish to reject humanity’s supposed dominion over nature and to take responsibility for wilful and excessive impact. Our intention is to constitute greater empathy between the world’s free-living things. As creative pragmatists committed to producing practical wisdom, we recognise a loss of humility and seek to reengage the aesthetic and the sublime, which provide interface and witness to spirit on earth. Cultural responses to the anthropo-scene realize that there are opportunities embedded in new constraints; but more importantly there is generative force amongst living things that must be engaged anew. We experiment with a new materialism and aim for new metaphysical purpose for the arts and humanities within the public domain.

Background

Draft1 scribed by Tim Collins (TC) with Reiko Goto, 18 June 2011, subsequently edited by Tom Bristow and Chris Maughan, with comments and encouragement from Aaron Franks and Chris Fremantle (CF). The AHM ‘State of Play in Scotland’ submission was initiated by CF. TC offered the first rough draft with proper word editing by Aaron Franks and Rachel Harkness, followed by strategic refinement by Rhian Williams, Kate Foster, Alistair McIntosh and Owain Jones. The full manifesto is a result of discussion that occurred on 17 June, 2011 with Aaron Franks, Owain Jones, Chris Maughan, Mike Robinson and Karen Syse. Tom Bristow and the ‘frog team’ were present in spirit if not in material form. The work was inspired and energized by presentations and dialogue with Alistair McIntosh and Gareth Evans all set within the wider context of the AHRC supported Values of Environmental Writing Network, organized by Hayden Lorimer, Alex Benchimol and Rhian Williams (2011).

 

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

Funded PhD opportunity

This post comes to you from EcoArtScotland

On The Edge Research and Woodend Barn Banchory have created a wonderful opportunity to undertake a funded PhD.

Woodend Barn is a multi-arts centre outside Aberdeen with a strong environmental programme including an organic cafe, allotments, etc.  On The Edge Research is a practice-led programme focused on artists working in public.

Supported through the Arts and Humanities Research Council’s Collaborative Doctoral Awards Scheme, they are looking for someone interested in understanding how

“creativity is channeled and provoked by the presence of an artist and in what ways this presence stimulates critical, socially and aesthetic understanding and action. It draws on a recent history of artists’ constructs and protocols for critiquing the institutional and organizational. It also draws in entrepreneurship studies, in particular approaches to understanding community as a dynamic.”

This could be undertaken by an artist as a practice-led, self-reflective, programme, or through other approaches.

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