Creative Responses

Arts for a safe climate – in Australia

This post comes to you from Culture|Futures

climarte-frontdumpWhat are the Australians doing in the field of arts and sustainability? CLIMARTE is an Australian organisation which has set out to “harness the creative power of the arts to inform, engage and inspire action on climate change”, and their April 2013 newsletter gives you a good introduction to the numerous arts activities in the country which are dealing with issues of sustainability or climate change:

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Newsletter from Climarte – Arts for a Safe Climate

Fiona Hall: Big Game Hunting
One of Australia’s most prominent contemporary artists, Fiona Hall is best known for extraordinary works that transform commonplace materials into vital organic forms with both contemporary and historical resonances. This trans-disciplinary survey exhibition at Heide Museum of Modern Art highlights her recent practice and her continuing focus on the relationship between nature and culture.

The exhibition includes trophy-style sculptures of endangered species from the International Conservation Union’s ‘Red List’, rendered in military camouflage and embellished with recycled items from contemporary culture, and a series of stunning bark-cloths, video and sculptural pieces inspired by a 2011 expedition to the unique marine environment of the Kermadec Trench on the Pacific Rim of Fire. This is a thought provoking and eerily beautiful exhibition — not to be missed!
At Heide Museum of Modern Art until 21 July 2013.

carbon-arts

Carbon Arts at Sydney Windmill
The Rocks Windmill will be host to the ElectriCITY Sparks program, which sees a windmill as the platform for exploring creative responses to our collective energy future, demanding an examination of history, community, and sustainability.

ElectriCITY Sparks focuses on energy efficiency, a journey that everyone of us can embark upon, and calls upon the creative sector and the creative in all of us to make this journey fun, rewarding and effective.

Over a week from 6-12 May, Carbon Arts will be putting on a film night, an exhibition, a panel session with leading industry, government, artist and community members, a gadget demo of all manner of home energy management devices from the kooky to the collaborative and a Hacker workshop for DIY and energy enthusiasts.

Most events are free, but need to be booked. Visit therocks.com or click on the links below for details on each event.

May 6-12 (9am-5pm): ElectriCITY Sparks Community Eco-Viz Exhibition
May 8 (5.30-8pm): ElectriCITY Sparks Panel Discussion
May 11 and 12 (2-4pm): ElectriCITY Sparks Gadget Demo
May 11 (3.30-6.30pm): ElectriCITY Sparks Maker Workshop
May 12 (6-8pm): ElectriCITY Sparks Film Night

Location: The Rocks Square, Sydney
Start date: 6 May 2013
End date: 12 May 2013
Price: mostly free

Presented by the Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority, Media Lab and Carbon Arts. Most events FREE, but places are limited so book to avoid disappointment.

climate-guardians

Climate Guardians
Climate Guardians are a political theatre troupe formed in response to insufficient Government action on increasingly alarming findings by climate scientists that we are fast approaching a ‘tipping point’ after which we will not be able to avert catastrophic climate change.

“We follow the practice of civil disobedience and all our actions and interventions are non-violent.” Check out some of the Climate Guardian’s latest actions

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Thin Ice
Visit researchers on four continents and the ocean as they study the changes in the atmosphere, oceans and ice sheets through measurements (from instruments, satellites, ice and rock) and computer modelling.

They talk about their work, and their hopes and fears, with a rare candour and directness, creating an intimate portrait of the global community of researchers racing to understand our planet’s changing climate.  View on-line, or arrange a public screening.
Film Search
Environmental Film Festival Melbourne 2013 is looking for films highlighting the impacts of society on the environment, or the impacts of the environment on society. EFFM will consider all submissions and select films for presentation at EFFM 2013. Entries close 31 May 2013. You can get the submission form here.

Petition: Paid to Pollute
Australians are encouraged to tell the Federal Treasurer and their local MPs to stop Australia’s $10 billion annual handout to big fossil fuel polluters.

Money to Australian arts student’s study in the US
The American Friends of the National Gallery of Australia Inc., in conjunction with the American Australian Association, is offering a scholarship for an Australian graduate or post graduate student of the Fine Arts or Curatorial Studies wishing to further their studies in the United States. The AusArt Fellowship is for up to US$ 30,000 a year. More information here.

digital-change-maker

Digital Change Makers
The Collaboratory are looking for four passionate change makers to undergo an eight week intensive training program provided by some of Australia’s leading digital change makers.

Gain skills and experience in order to co-create strategy, build websites, communicate online and use social media to build movements of positive change.

Apprenticeships start on 13 May 2013. Applications close: 3 May 2013.

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“We need a big movement, and big movements come from beauty and meaning, not columns of statistics.”
Bill McKibben

Climarte writes on their home page:
“The arts can be a catalyst for change. Those who work, live and play in the arts represent all that is creative, imaginative and hopeful in humanity. It is time for us to engage with our communities and our leaders, our peers and our audiences. It is time to let them know that we will act, and that we expect them to act on this threat to humanity and our world. It is time to have our voices heard on climate change.”

You can subscribe to CLIMARTE’s newsletter here: climarte.org

CLIMARTE’s postal address is:
P.O.Box 2429 Richmond South
Victoria 3121 AUSTRALIA

 

Culture|Futures is an international collaboration of organizations and individuals who are concerned with shaping and delivering a proactive cultural agenda to support the necessary transition towards an Ecological Age by 2050.

The Cultural sector that we refer to is an interdisciplinary, inter-sectoral, inter-genre collaboration, which encompasses policy-making, intercultural dialogue/cultural relations, creative cities/cultural planning, creative industries and research and development. It is those decision-makers and practitioners who can reach people in a direct way, through diverse messages and mediums.

Affecting the thinking and behaviour of people and communities is about the dissemination of stories which will profoundly impact cultural values, beliefs and thereby actions. The stories can open people’s eyes to a way of thinking that has not been considered before, challenge a preconceived notion of the past, or a vision of the future that had not been envisioned as possible. As a sector which is viewed as imbued with creativity and cultural values, rather than purely financial motivations, the cultural sector’s stories maintain the trust of people and society.
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“MIT japan 3/11 initiative”

This post comes to you from Cultura21

By Benjamin Smith

November 14th, 2011
MIT (USA)

“In the aftermath of the disaster suffered in Japan, MIT launched the MIT Japan 3/11 Initiative, a multi-year collaborative project focused on disaster-resilient planning, design and reconstruction. Back from the first MIT Japan 3/11 workshop which took place this summer, Shun Kanda and Jim Wescoat will discuss the process and challenges in planning and implementing alternative strategies for disaster-preparedness. Shun Kanda is a Tokyo native and the Director of Architectural Studies for the MIT-Japan Program. James L. Wescoat, Jr. is Aga Khan Professor in the School of Architecture and Planning at MIT.”

MIT Japan 3/11 Initiative:   http://web.mit.edu/japan3-11/home.html

The “Zones of Emergency: Artistic Interventions – Creative Responses to Conflict & Crisis” Fall 2011 lecture series investigates initiatives and modes of intervention in contested spaces, zones of conflict, or areas affected by environmental disasters. The intention is to explore whether artistic interventions can transform, disrupt or subvert current environmental, urban, political, and social conditions in critical ways. A crucial question is how can such interventions propose ideas, while at the same time respecting the local history and culture.

More information at the Zones of Emergency Blog: http://zonesofemergency.mit.edu/

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

Ploughshares from Swords – Social Sculpture and Cultural Agency

This post comes to you from Cultura21

November 07th, 2011 MIT (USA)

“How does creative activism contribute to society? How do we moderate crises through individual and collective art practice? How do we reconcile the arts, activism, and pedagogy? Stella McGregor, Founder and Director of Urbano Project, will share her experience of working with inner city youth and introduce projects such as Violence Transformed, and Pedro Reyes’ Palas por Pistolas. Stella McGregor has been an artist and a cultural worker for over 25 years, working on projects in Boston, New Orleans, Macedonia, and Taiwan.”

Urbano Project:  http://urbanoproject.org

The “Zones of Emergency: Artistic Interventions – Creative Responses to Conflict & Crisis” Fall 2011 lecture series investigates initiatives and modes of intervention in contested spaces, zones of conflict, or areas affected by environmental disasters. The intention is to explore whether artistic interventions can transform, disrupt or subvert current environmental, urban, political, and social conditions in critical ways. A crucial question is how can such interventions propose ideas, while at the same time respecting the local history and culture.

More information at the Zones of Emergency Blog: http://zonesofemergency.mit.edu/

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

“Enabling Emergent Voices And Expression Through Technology”

This post comes to you from Cultura21

October 17th, 2011
MIT Media Lab, USA

“Moore’s law and the Internet have dramatically reduced the cost of producing and distributing information. This has greatly lowered the cost of collaboration and has empowered a qualitatively different “public” to think, express, and act without, or in spite of, central authority. These changes and advances in technology enabled interventions such as low-cost video cameras in the case of WITNESS; blogs (Global Voices); or open hardware and software used to build, distribute, collect and visualize data from geiger counters (Safecast). Ito will discuss how these trends relate to media, citizenship, academics, and conflicts. Joichi Ito was named Director of the MIT Media Lab in April 2011.”

The “Zones of Emergency: Artistic Interventions – Creative Responses to Conflict & Crisis” Fall 2011 lecture series investigates initiatives and modes of intervention in contested spaces, zones of conflict, or areas affected by environmental disasters. The intention is to explore whether artistic interventions can transform, disrupt or subvert current environmental, urban, political, and social conditions in critical ways. A crucial question is how can such interventions propose ideas, while at the same time respecting the local history and culture.

More information at the Zones of Emergency Blog: http://zonesofemergency.mit.edu/

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

“In The Meantime”

This post comes to you from Cultura21

October 3rd, 2011
“The New School” (USA)

“In 1992 Jack Persekian founded Anadiel Gallery, the first and only independent gallery for Palestinian artists in Jerusalem. Persekian later founded the Al-Ma’mal Foundation to continue the gallery’s mission and to further promote, instigate, and disseminate the production of art in Palestine. In his talk, Persekian will share his experience – the challenges and the outcomes – of creating a space for Palestinian artists in Jerusalem. Have the methods for working in contested spaces, such as Israel, changed over the years? Does art have the potential to engage a zone of conflict in a different way than politics? Persekian was Head Curator of the Sharjah Biennial (2004–2007), Artistic Director of the Sharjah Biennial (2007–2011), and Director of the Sharjah Art Foundation (2009–2011).”

Al-Ma’mal Foundation:  www.almamalfoundation.org

The “Zones of Emergency: Artistic Interventions – Creative Responses to Conflict & Crisis” Fall 2011 lecture series investigates initiatives and modes of intervention in contested spaces, zones of conflict, or areas affected by environmental disasters. The intention is to explore whether artistic interventions can transform, disrupt or subvert current environmental, urban, political, and social conditions in critical ways. A crucial question is how can such interventions propose ideas, while at the same time respecting the local history and culture.

More information at the Zones of Emergency Blog: http://zonesofemergency.mit.edu/

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

Song of The Bird King | Ian Garrett speaks about Art and Eco-Justice

A little bit of a circular reference, but here is an article Executive Director Ian Garrett wrote for Susie Ibarra and Roberto Rodriguez’s Song of The Bird King Blog:

While attending the Arts Presenters APAP Conference in January, Roberto and I sat on a panel, The Tipping Point: Artists and Climate Change led by Graham Devlin. We were delighted to meet at the session Ian Garrett, Executive Director for The Center for Sustainable Practice in the Arts. He is based in LA and at CalArts University where he also teaches Sustainability in the Theatre Department and with interdisciplinary artists. It’s comforting and inspiring to hear and see the work of Ian Garrett and his active commitment to cultural and environmental sustainability. Garrett’s work challenges and engages in dialogue on these issues. Here he speaks about Art and Eco-Justice.   – Susie Ibarra

Giving Voice: Art and Eco-Justice

Ian Garrett

This past December, I traveled to Copenhagen for the fifteenth Conference of the Partners meeting, better known as COP15. I was there to serve as a witness to the artistic and creative responses to COP15. I was not looking to observe the UN Climate Change Conference itself; I felt this was easily accessible through remote media, and, in some ways, the less interesting event. While COP15 itself had far reaching implications for international governments, I felt my presence could serve to chronicle the other voices that were trying to be heard through less formal means. And, in the winter edition of the Center for Sustainable Practice in the Arts Quarterly, I asserted that this creative sound — from the gallery exhibitions to the street-performance demonstrations — was the only collective, non-political voice. There is no political body that serves as the voice of the holistic sense of Planet Earth quite like those of artists.

Upon my return to California, I participated in the Arts in the One World Conference at California Institute of the Arts (CalArts). In this past year, its fifth, the theme was guhahamuka, a Kiri Rwandan word that refers to the breathless attempt to articulate the inexpressible. And again I came to these thoughts of giving voice to that which can not speak for itself, and trying to communicate things which are nearly impossible to communicate. I continually come back to the necessity of art to fill this void. I see creativity as not just that oversoul of our celestial orb and home, but that which gives all people and things a chance to communicate with others without requiring political power or similar agenda-ed platform.

Invisible 5, a project by Amy Balkin, is a prime example of this type of work. Organized as a self-guided audio tour through the California Central Valley along US Interstate Highway 5, this project highlights ecological issues related to the history of this thoroughfare from Los Angeles to San Francisco. This additional layer of spatial encoding transforms the experience of transiting across a typically uneventful stretch of highway into a shocking story of rapid ecological disturbance, injustice, and racism. It reveals a hidden past, lending the inspiration for the project’s title.

My own motor-touring experience comes with a personal history of making this driving numerous times. My father was raised in the San Jose area, and my paternal grandparents were laid to rest there. I grew up traveling back and forth fairly frequently. My brother and sister in-law now live in Oakland, and my wife and I travel when we can to visit and see our little nephew. Were I not to have met Amy and heard her speak about this project, I perhaps never would think about the secrets just beyond the shoulder of the road as I barreled along this route. Without this piece, there would only be silence, and I would have traveled on, ignorant of the veiled violence.

In Balkin’s project, we are told of the duality of this region’s former riches. We hear about building up the area surrounding this new thoroughfare, the impact of oil, the creation of large agribusiness, industrial farming, toxic waste, and deadly fog. The stories are told by activists, residents, officials, and rangers. Without this compilation, though, one might never know the tales this land now holds. There are those who would prefer we weren’t paying attention; things are rarely hidden for the sake of being hidden.

From the largest gatherings of political powers on the future of global ecology to the environmental maladies laid at the feet of small rural communities that aren’t expected to say much, it is important that silence isn’t encouraged. There is no advocacy in silence. There is no remembering in silence. The small island nation of Tuvalu, who became a household name through advocacy at COP15, is about to vanish due to the rising seas, and uses its little might to assert that it doesn’t want to be forgotten while the larger nations jabber. This example is most compelling because it was the closest to a pure voice that exists in these political talks. It is not talking about the threat to its economy, but simply survival.

We could start to talk about any number of instances where advocacy is needed. The Bhopal incident in India was only recently revisited when Dow Chemical bought Union Carbide and had to answer questions about this tragedy. In order to appeal to developers, structurally sound public housing projects were closed in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. The list goes on in terms of injustice and ecology, and a lack of advocacy predicated on environmental grounds.

This is what makes Song of the Bird King so important. It is an effort to amplify the voices of those affected by the over-fishing, commercialization, and subsequent acidification of Lake Sebu in the Philippines. But it also shows use the problematized arena that art must step into. It is easier to talk about the negative environmental impact of an action. There are more metrics for the destruction of habitat and ecosystems than the cultural consequences; We can talk about sea levels rising. We can talking about the annual fish kill of a body of water. We can talk about the toxicity of particulates in the air. But we cannot empirically state the effects on a population and how this affects its culturally sustainability.

We live in a world where so many are culturally and geographically disconnected from their lands of origin that we rarely consider the importance of place to people. As Susie and Roberto’s documentary notes, only four percent of populations live indigenously. But we find it difficult to even understand the connection of people to their non-indigenous homes, like the farming communities of California’s Central Valley or those displaced by Hurricane Katrina. When a storm is coming, we ask, “Why don’t people just move out of the way?” without valuing a personal or a cultural attachment to place.

This is the root of ecojustice, providing fairness to a person’s or people’s habitat, and, while images of drowning polar bears are heartbreaking, helping us recognize our humanity in environmental issues. Balkin’s work highlights those we don’t see in an area we see as vacant — the “away” where we keep throwing everything. We forget about the tragedies like Bohpal that continue to affect lives discarded by corporations on the other side of the globe. Who knew about the small islands in the Pacific until their inhabitants spoke up? Tuvalu and others are merely tropically anomalies with little to exploit. And, in Song of the Bird King, Susie and Roberto have the vision to look at Lake Sebu, not just as environmental issue, but one of those rare places still connected to a culture and people.

Please check out Ian Garrett’s current projects at:

http://www.atsunset.net
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1539524181/get-at-sundown-to-the-edinburgh-fringe
http://www.sustainablepractice.org
http://connect.sustainablepractice.org
http://wiki.sustainablepractice.org

Song of The Bird King | Ian Garrett speaks about Art and Eco-Justice.

Nevada Museum of Art|Artists | Writers | Environments: A Grant Program

Teams of visual artists and writers who are U.S. citizens working on art + environment projects anywhere in the world from July 2010 through August 2011 will be eligible to apply for the first A | W | E Grant. Letters of interest must be received via e-mail on or before Friday, April 16, 2010 with invited applications due on or before June 22, 2010. The grant recipients will be announced on or before July 6, 2010.

A | W | E Grants

In 2010 the CA+E is piloting a grant program for visual artists and writers working together in the field. The purpose of the program is to encourage the creation of new art + environment projects that seek to address environmental challenges rather than simply comment on them, to foster deeper and more immediate public awareness of art + environment projects, and to encourage unique field reports of lasting value to scholars and other artists. The intent is for the writer(s) to document, report upon, and/or analyze the work of the artist(s) and its environmental context, not to provide creative responses such as fiction or poetry.

During this first year, one grant of $10,000 will be awarded to a team of artist(s) and writer(s) engaged in art + environment projects. Of particular interest will be those proposals addressing communities stressed by global change. Publication venues by writers can include articles in magazines, journals, or online, and chapters or essays in books, but significant public outreach will be favored.

Eligibility

Eligible teams will include at least one visual artist working in the field and one writer to accompany the artist into the field during the project. Artists can work in any medium, and the writers range from journalists to art historians. The total amount of the award may be divided between the artists and writers in any way they see fit. Funds may be used for travel, per diem, materials, equipment, and other costs, including time to work.

Applications during this first year are open only to artists and writers who are U.S. citizens, although they may work anywhere in the world. In future years we hope to broaden eligibility to artists and writers from other countries.

Application Process, Deadlines, Timeline

Interested artists and/or writers should submit a two-page letter of interest by e-mail on or before Friday, April 16, 2010. Letters should include a brief project description, budget and biographies of the artist(s) and writer(s). Please identify your letter of the artist(s) and writer(s). Please identify your letter of interest in the subject line of the e-mail when submitting as “AWE letter.”

Finalists will be selected by July 6, 2010 and invited to mail in a physical application that will include a longer narrative, budget, documentation of citizenship and previous works, and resumes.

Applications will be due on or before June 22, 2010 with the award announced on or before April 16, 2010. Finalist proposals will be posted on the Museum’s website, as well as that of the award recipient, upon awarding of the grant.

Archives, Exhibitions, Presentations

Finalists’ application materials will not be returned, but become part of the CA+E Archives. Although the artworks and writings of the grant recipients will remain property of their creators, the CA+E will collect related project materials of the funded project for its archives.

Results of the funded project will be exhibited at the Museum, and the recipients of the grant be invited to present their work.

FAQ’s

We strongly suggest that applicants visit the Nevada Museum of Art website and navigate to the Center for Art + Environment pages, and in particular the A | W | E FAQ page for more information. The FAQs may be updated periodically as we receive questions.

Contact

Letters of interest sent via e-mail with the subject line “AWE letter,” as well as any questions, should be directed to Rosalind Bedell, CA+E Manager at Rosalind Bedell or 775.329.3333 ex. 252

Funding

The A | W | E Grant is supported by the The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.

Two Days in Copenhagen

We’ve arrive back in the apartment after our second day in Copenhagen. I will refrain from saying we’re here for Cop15, because, while I’m interested in what’s going on in there, I’m really here to see the creative responses collected in this place at this time. That isn’t to say we didn’t go to the Bella Center, we did, but it’s not our primary goal.

I had the opportunity to check in with Martin Rosengaard of Wooloo.org while Miranda was delayed in London, as well as get a very helpful and personal tour of the city on bike by our host (and sterling scenographer) Sara Vilslev, a friend from the 2007 Prague Quadrennial.

On Sunday we headed to the Bright Green Expo at the Forum. It is the concurrent trade show for green tech during COP15. There was a promise of the inclusion of cultural programming, so it seemed like a good place to start. The Cultural programming really consisted of a DJ/VJ set for about an hour by CPH:DOX remixing Cities on Speed. We moved on pretty quickly: green-tech (good or green-washing) is green-tech. We’re into it, but it’s better covered elsewhere.

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We then continued on to view the CO2 Cube floating by the Tycho Brahe Planetarium. After the artist renderings  was surprised to see it’s construction was of shipping containers and that it had media on 2 of 4 sides. They were recalibrating the video, but we got some footage you can see from posts yesterday. We only strayed away for a little while so that we could wander towards the Downtown Hopenhagen Live area until we spoke with Deanne LeRue of the Meridian Health Foundation and Millennium Art and Steve Mason of Obscrua Digital.

Afterwards we returned for some quality time with the work at Hopenhagen Live. This green glowing cluster of portable exhibition rooms showcased policy, the integration of sustainable solutions into the city scape and some creative interpretations highlighting everyday relationships to the environment. A favorite was The Apartment, seen in a quick video here:

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We wandered to the Polar Ice Bear to check it’s melt status, slowed by the freezing temperatures we’ve dipped into. After dinner we headed over to the CO2 Cube Reception, which was a high class affair, no pictures, but we did catch some night footage of the cube.

We did miss the demonstrations going south, which you’ll likely know resulted in hundreds of arrests. We did hear the helicopters and sirens as Police sprung into action, preemptively arresting people after a group of anarchists started egging them on. Tensions are a little high now, though the majority of all demonstrations have been peaceful.

With everything going on, we felt it was important to offer some guidance around town. So, to help others better find the arts activities occurring in Copenhagen, I spent the rest of the night trying to get everything onto our events calendar and created a google map for those who want to find their way around, guided by Eco-Arts.

Monday is now wrapping up and the center of the city, all the way to the Bella Center is policed to within an inch of it’s life. However, we both leave (though I return just 24 hours later) on Tuesday, so Monday became about trying to see everything that was open (like many cities, cultural institutions in Copenhagen are closed on Mondays).

IMG_1175-Panorama

We began by heading to the wrong address for the Poulsen Gallery. But, once we found our mistake, we were able to make it to the installation of Ghost Forest in Thorvaldsens Plads, right around the corner from the real Poulsen Gallery. It’s quite breath-taking, especially with a proper background in the process of getting these stumps here. But, even as we seemed to be some of a few onlookers, there was a constant police presence here and along the canal.

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LED at 7 meters high, where the sea will rise here if Greenland's ice sheet melts.

The Poulsen Gallery has been turned over to The Colonel (said phonetically and not as one who serves fried chicken or in the military), the identity of french artist Thierry Geoffroy, as his HQ for a number of evolving projects during COP15. This is serving as the headquarters for the Yes Men and their SurvivaBalls (registered trademark), a series of Critical Runs, Facebook projects, and whatever else they come up with while here. It’s advised to check in with them regularly. Upon my return, I’ll likely head back over to try and talk to some of them about what they are doing. We were lucky to be invited to a semi-junket event, which we’ll get to in a moment.

With the short daylight moments dwindling, we walked to the Bella Center, hoping to find the path set by Glowing Climate, which we were able to find some of as we got closer.

It should be remarked that the Bella Center is not in the center of Copenhagen. It is, from our lodgings, 8.4km or 5.2 miles. From the center of town it is 5.9km or 3.7 miles.

While we didn’t see much until right up to the Bella Center, as the lights from 7m began to appear overhead.  Once we were there the walk was worth it. The Pulse of the Earth is a fantastically creepy piece and really lends to the night time, what I’d venture to call semi-apocalyptic scene that is the entrance to the barricaded center. This is entirely appropriate, COP15 itself is semi-apocalyptic. Between the pulsing red lights of the installation, the cold an huddled hopeful observers lined up at the fences, scores of police, Avaaz.org‘s and Climate Action Network‘s Jumbotron showing the award for fossil of the day, press, vegans dressed in animal costumes pass out bags for converts and the ground littered with pamphlets (really now), it was all a bit amazing to see.

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As the talks let out, we hopped the metro back into town. We had diner and made it to the Poulsen Gallery event, were we saw a demonstration of the SurviaBall (still a registered trademark), were treated to a song from the Red Suited Climate Debt Agents (accompanied by the green suited Mr. Green from Oxfam), and milled about the gallery while that day’s talks were remixed for ambiance.

We made out way home, finding that it too was lined with the flashing red markers from 7m, just as the reports of clashes between activists and police in Christiania started to make it into our news feed. I had planned to visit Christiania upon returning from the sojourn to London, but that’s now differently colored. Word on the street was that the police had left the area, to some great extent, alone, as to focus on the Bella Center and downtown. As I write, it is being evacuated and those in cafés are being told to leave or be arrested.

It’s getting colder here in Copenhagen, but tensions are starting to boil over.

Tomorrow we both head to London. Miranda will continue to head on home, but I will be there for the Future Arcola launch event at City Hall. I will also , finally, meet William Shaw of the RSA in person, after missing him by hours in Copenhagen.

More recap soon. When I return the museums and exhibition halls will be open, while parts of town are shut down. And I’m curious as to see how we move around the city when Obama arrives on Friday.

P.S. It was the Yes Men