Monthly Archives: July 2016

Julia Barton: Collecting new rock samples in Scotland’s GeoParks

This post comes to you from EcoArtScotland

Featured Image: plastic rock reveal. NH 093 988 Isle Martin. J Barton

Julia Barton sent us the following information on her current work:

Artist Julia Barton is presently collecting classifying samples of a new rock now found on beaches in the remotest places on the North West Coast and Shetland, the rocks have become the focus of her Littoral Art Project which is investigating beach litter around Scotland.

Littoral meaning, the zone between the low and the high tide marks.

In 2013 a Canadian geological team named this rock ‘Plastiglomerate’ a category now acknowledged by scientists as a geological marker of our time (the Anthropocene) .  These ‘rocks’ lumps of melted plastic are now common on some beaches, as people turn to burning the increasing volumes of plastic waste which accumulates on beaches.  Every year 8 million tonnes of plastic reaches the world’s ocean and 100,000 sharks, turtles, dolphins and whales die from eating plastic according to the Marine Conservation Society.

The ‘plastic rocks’ are difficult to distinguish from natural beach rocks, and often go un-noticed, each has a unique molecular composition, their toxicity and timeline is unknown.  The ‘rocks’ collected will be used to construct the principal piece of an exhibition opening at Da Gadderie, Shetland Museum – 8th Oct-12 Nov and at An Talla Solais Caledonian Gallery in 2017 (dates to be confirmed).

It is intended that the exhibition will then travel to Edinburgh and internationally. Julia is presently producing a ‘Guide to Beach Litter’ to accompany the exhibition. This exhibition has received part funding from the National Lottery through Creative Scotland Open Project Funding.

Littoral Art Project was set up in 2013 by artist Julia Barton in response to her fear of drowning in litter which she experienced whilst walking on a beach on the North West coast of Scotland. Since then Julia has surveyed and mapped litter on over 20 Scottish beaches engaging local communities in her interactive investigations some of which can be viewed

The aim of the project and exhibition is to encourage understanding of the threat that beach and marine litter presents and to promote change by allowing people to see litter in different ways and consider the long term environmental implications.

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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ART+CLIMATE = CHANGE THE BOOK

We are proud to announce the release of our first publication.

Published by Melbourne University Press
Edited by Guy Abrahams, Bronwyn Johnson, Kelly Gellatly

Presenting the work of Australian and international artists  ART+CLIMATE=CHANGE explores the power of art to create the empathy, emotional engagement and cultural understanding needed to motivate meaningful change.

This hardback publication includes beautiful images, and informative and thought provoking essays by Kelly Gellatly, Director of The Ian Potter Museum of Art, The University of Melbourne, and John Wiseman, Deputy Director of the Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute. 

Price: $55

Book launch
6:00pm Monday 25 July
Carlton Connect Institute
The University of Melbourne

Image: Rosemary Laing, weather #6, 2006, (detail)

Save the Date: 51 Shades of Green

This post comes from Creative Carbon Scotland

51 Shades of Green: Action in the Arts will take place on Thursday 27th October 2016, returning to the Pearce Institute in Glasgow for a full day of discussion around the key actions the arts sector is making to reduce its environmental impact.

Last years conference (50 Shades of Green: Stories of Sustainability in the Arts Sector) saw attendees from across the arts sharing their experiences, inventions and approaches to carbon emissions reporting and engaging others with environmental sustainability. This year we’re matching the sharing of best practice with a focus on taking the next step towards carbon reduction, and building the momentum towards action in the arts.

Whether you’re a Green Arts Initiative member, a Regularly Funded Organisation working towards Creative Scotland’s ‘Environment’ Connecting Theme, an arts venue keen to find out what your peers are doing, an arts company who has been working on sustainability for years, or just coming to sustainability in the sector for the first time, there will be something for you!

To register your interest (and be the first to hear when tickets become available), enter your details and ideas here: Save the Date: 51 Shades of Green

The post Save the Date: 51 Shades of Green 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

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COAL PRIZE 2016 – Call for entries


DEADLINE – September 11, 2016

The COAL Prize will reveal the wealth of responses provided by artists to current environmental issues and will encourage the emergence of a new culture concerning nature and sustainability. The global ecological crisis, in the form of climate change, loss of biodiversity, depletion of resources, and various forms of pollution, is above all a cultural challenge that is determined by our individual and collective behaviour.

The COAL Prize is open to artists from all over the world who deploy their creativity to devise and experiment with solutions and bear witness to the transformation of territories, lifestyles, organizations, and means of production, while making a contribution to the process themselves. Together they are participating in building a new collective narrative, a new world of imagination, an evolving shared heritage, a positive framework that is optimistic and essential for everyone to find the motivation to implement the necessary changes towards a more sustainable world.

The COAL Prize, created in 2010 by the COAL Art and Ecology Association, aims to present to the general public and political figures other ways of understanding the complexity of climate and other environmental challenges through a multiplicity of views and creative alternatives. Every year the COAL Prize highlights ten projects by artists working on environmental issues in the field of visual arts. They are selected through an international call for projects. One of them is awarded the COAL Prize by a jury of personalities from the domains of art and ecology.

Organized under the patronage of Madame Ségolène Royal, the COAL Prize 2016 will be awarded during a ceremony organized in Paris in October, with the support of the French Ministry of Environment, Energy and the Sea, the French Ministry of Culture and Communication, the European Union and the Imagine2020 network, the Musée de la Chasse et de la Nature and the François Sommer Foundation.

Stage Left Productions, Third Way Theatre and Chromatic Theatre invite diverse agents of change to join us in an innovative, 6-day training intensive in arts-based equity intervention.

August 1 – 6, 2016 – Calgary, AB Canada

$350 thereafter (sliding scale & barters are available)

The IN-Justice Equity Training Intensive offers a rare and dynamic opportunity to recharge our passions, increase our capacity and strengthen our resolve.

  • This one-time only, open registration intensive…

    Immerses participants in Theatre of the Oppressed methods, as a unique form of embodied learning and sharing – one that equalizes the power imbalances that often stymie cross-cultural collaboration.

  • Introduces a foundational equity framework that centers the bottom-up, earned knowledge of diverse peoples, results in a shared vocabulary and analysis, and offers up practical tools for confronting inequity.
  • Provides accessible, step-by-step instruction in many Theatre of the Oppressed methods, including Image & Forum Theatre, Cops in the Head and Rainbow of Desire.
  • Offers-up many practical applications on how to integrate Theatre of the Oppressed techniques and anti-oppressive practice into social justice initiatives.
  • Attends to internal and external oppressions, as well as individual agency and structural-level interventions.
  • Equips diverse agents of change to engage in intercultural solidarity, develop shared interests, and make collective impact.

For more information and to register, please visit: www.artsexchange.weebly.com

This IN-Justice Equity Training is part of The Arts ExCHANGE Project. Arts ExCHANGE is a unique, cross-continental collaboration between Stage Left Productions (Canada) and Third Way Theatre (Australia): Two renown Theatre of the Oppressed companies founded and led by diverse women – who invite daring agents of change to go beyond the social justice status quo.

The Calgary intensive is proudly hosted The Calgary Congress for Equity & Diversity in the Arts and The University of Calgary’s School for Creative and Performing Arts.

We thank the Canada Council’s Equity Office and Calgary Arts Development for their support.

Yours in solidarity,
Michele
——–
founder & Artistic Director
Stage Left Productions
www.stage-left.org

Fit for the Future Building a resilient, environmentally sustainable cultural estate

Weds 21st Sept, 11.00 – 18.00
Lyric Hammersmith, London
Lunch and refreshments will be provided.

Our cultural buildings are more than inanimate walls: they shape the performances they house and the experiences of their visitors, physically transmit values, and become symbols of their time and community.

Join us at Fit for the Future to explore the environmental sustainability of your buildings – the day will focus on capital projects and the opportunities and challenges of climate change adaptation and mitigation for buildings, including renewable energy, energy efficiency, heritage conservation, innovative design approaches and team engagement.Taking place at the recently redeveloped Lyric Hammersmith, the day includes a tour of the building and is being held in association with Fit for the Future Network.
Image courtesy Lyric Hammersmith. Photo: Jim Stephenson.

Book Your Free Place

The day will offer:

  • inspiring panels featuring leading sustainability practitioners
  • networking and peer-to-peer learning
  • in-depth and diverse case studies with those who have worked on capital (re)development projects
  • break out sessions on energy efficiency, large-scale refurbishment and new venue design, and financing models and opportunities for greener buildings

The full event agenda will be announced soon.

This event is for strategic decision makers, CEOs, executives, facilities managers, heads of operations, and anyone responsible for the upkeep, operation, design, and/or refurbishment of cultural and heritage buildings; as well as funders of capital works.

Find Out More

The Australian Earth Laws Alliance Announces RONA16, a networked event for Australian Creatives.

The Australian Earth Laws Alliance (AELA) will be hosting the first Australian Rights of Nature Tribunal in Brisbane on 22nd October 2016. To support this landmark event, AELA Earth Arts have launched RONA16, a network of creative events around the country during September and October, and an open invitation for everyone to participate and join the   celebrations.

Earth Arts is the creative branch of AELA, with its own dedicated team of arts and legal professionals, who deliver research and events that explicitly connect the philosophies and practice between the arts, environment and governance. Each year, Earth Arts focuses their work on a specific program, in 2016 its RONA16 focusing on the Rights of  Nature.

What are the Rights of  Nature?

Modern industrialised societies treat the natural world as if it is merely human property  and can be bought, sold and destroyed at our whim. This lack of respect for the ecosystems that sustain all life is one of the root causes of the ecological crisis we face today. The Rights of Nature movement advocates for recognising in law, that the natural world or ‘Earth community’ is sacred and has the right to exist, thrive and regenerate its vital cycles, and we – the people – have the legal authority to protect these rights on behalf of the Earth community.

The Rights of Nature Tribunal will hear cases presented by citizens and Earth lawyers concerned about the destruction of ecosystems in Australia. It will also be a celebration of the incredible natural world of which we are a part. To support the Tribunal and promote cultural engagement with this emerging movement, RONA16 will showcase events that blend creative re- interpretations of environmental governance with cultural responses to the rights of the natural world to flourish. There are two opportunities to get involved: attend the curated exhibition and event series in Brisbane this October; or host your own event (art  exhibition,  performance, creative conversation) and join a network of RONA16 events happening across Australia – for full details visit www.RONA16.org.au.

RONA16 is a nation-wide invitation for artists, galleries, groups and organisations, to exhibit your creative and cultural responses to the rights of the natural  world.

All inquiries to RONA16 Assistant National Coordinator, creative@earthlaws.org.au AELA  Earth  Arts: http://www.earthlaws.org.au/current-projects/earth-arts/

EMBODYING ENLIVENMENT – Queer, SM and Eco-Sexual Perspectives

The Festival on the Art of Lust

EMBODYING ENLIVENMENT – Queer, SM and Eco-Sexual Perspectives

Symposium curated by Dr. Sacha Kagan

July 22-24 2016

In an age where the modern myths of Mastery and Control have started to crumble down, the rediscovery of the body, of one & many ecology/ecologies, and of intelligence beyond the narrowly rational intellectual realm, is opening up new perspectives for transformation of individuals and society.

Corporeal practices allow us to learn through embodiment, whether they are sexual, gender-related and/or otherwise exploring new territories of self and others. But how do these practices relate to existing social order? How far do they maintain the status quo, titillate social change, or even maybe foster deeper social transformation?

This symposium will explore some alternative cultures in their relations to mainstream cultures. It will investigate individual practices and temporary communities. The guest speakers will introduce different approaches and perspectives, such as Queer, BDSM, Phenomenological Animism, Queer Ecologies, Eco-Sexuality, Metahumanism, and the philosophy of Enlivenement. We will exchange and explore together how knowing and making worlds with the body, rather than ‘against’ the body, relates to philosophical, political and civilizational questions about the kind of society we want to become.

The Speakers:

Andreas Weber Caffyn Jesse Cate Sandilands Elizabeth Wagner
Andreas Weber Caffyn Jesse Cate Sandilands Elizabeth Wagner
Poetics of the Flesh Queer Embodiment Queering Communities:
Becoming (With) Plants
Strategies for
(self)normalization in sadomasochism
Fri 11:00h – German Fri 16:00h – English Fri 20:00h – English Sat 13:00h – German
Sat 18:00h – English Sat 11:00h – English Sun 13:00h – English Sun 16:00h – German
Jaime del Val Robin Bauer Thomas Burø
 Jaime del Val  Robin Bauer  Thomas Burø
Metabody Transgression, transformation,
exuberant possibilities
Our Sad Contempt
for Powerlessness
Sat 16:00h – English Fri 13:00h – English Sun 18:00h – English
Sun 11:00h – English Fri 18:00h – English

Tickets: 3-day pass: 60 € / students 40 € 1-day-pass: 50 € / students 30 €

Full Information and ticketing: http://www.xplore-berlin.de/index.php/en/symposium-en-16

Salzburg Global Seminar Report

Salzburg Global Seminar recently published a report on our session “Beyond Green: The Arts as a Catalyst for Sustainability”. We want to take this opportunity to share the creative thinking that took place in Salzburg with you!

As you will see in the attached report, it was a very dynamic gathering, with participants from around the globe. We are very excited about this program and the momentum that has built around it.

The “art of the possible” is becoming even more relevant as the glow of the Climate Change Agreement adopted in Paris at the end of 2015 gives way to the more sober, and challenging, process of implementation on national and local levels. The arts can be a powerful catalyst to accelerate the changes that need to happen, sooner rather than later!

An online version of the report can also be found here: http://www.salzburgglobal.org/fileadmin/user_upload/Documents/2010-2019/2016/Session_561/SalzburgGlobal_Report_561__online_.pdf

Please feel free to share these materials with others who might be interested, and please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions you might have about the Beyond Green session. Thank you in advance for your interest!

Insect Hotels: How to Design a Dwelling Place for Your Anthropod Friends

Attract Beneficial Insects and Bees With an Insect Hotel

At any given time, your garden might contain over 2,000 species of insects. Some of these are pests, the kind you don’t want in your garden because they destroy your flowers and vegetables. But many others are beneficial insects, the kind you want to attract because they work with you to control pests and pollinate flowers.

Insect Hotels Attract Beneficial Insects

Beneficial insects support biodiversity, the foundation for the world’s ecological balance. An insect hotel in your garden will attract these beneficial insects, offering them a space where they can propagate and hunker down for the winter. Encouraging biodiversity in the garden helps to increase ecosystem productivity.

Placing an insect hotel in the garden increases the chances that beneficial insects will naturally visit your garden. Also known as bug hotels, bug boxes, and bug houses, these human-made structures offer several benefits. In addition to their decorative qualities, they help supplement the increasing loss of natural habitats.

Although altered and heavily landscaped gardens can be beautiful, they often lack enough of the natural habitats needed to attract beneficial insects and encourage biodiversity. Placing insect hotels in your garden offers optimal bug real estate – the right kinds of habitats to attract these beneficial insects, increase their numbers, and reduce the need for pesticides, since these bugs offer biological pest control. A balanced ecosystem provides numerous benefits not just for the individual garden, but for the environment as a whole.

Benefits of Insect Hotels

  1. Supplement the increasing loss of natural habitats
  2. Encourage beneficial insects to help control pests
  3. Stimulate biodiversity and ecological balance in the garden
  4. Offer an opportunity for educating children about how balanced ecosystems work

Natural Pest Control

Welcoming beneficial insects and pollinators into your garden reduces or eliminates the need for pesticides. Poison kills weeds and pesky insects, but poison is not selective: it kills beneficial insects as well.

According to the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service, three-quarters of the world’s flowering plants and roughly 35 percent of the world’s food crops depend on animal pollinators to reproduce, with more than 3,500 species of native bees helping to increase crop yields. By some estimates, one out of every three bites of food we consume depends on animal pollinators like bees, butterflies and moths, birds, bats, beetles, and other insects.

The Beneficial Insect Community

Albert Einstein once said, “Mankind will not survive the honeybees’ disappearance for more than five years.”

Bees

Once again, Einstein was right. About a third of our food supply depends on pollination. Bees are essential for the production of fruits and vegetables, and their loss is negatively impacting our food chain. In addition to pesticides, the harsh winters and droughts from climate change have also played a role in the declining bee colony population. Gardeners need to remedy this situation by doing whatever is possible to attract bees and help maintain their health and safety.

Honeybee Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) refers to the rapidly declining bee population, which poses a significant risk not just to the survival of the bees, but to our survival as well. The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) attributes the decline in large part to the increased use of pesticides, such as neonicotinoids, or neonics, manufactured and promoted by multinational chemical giants. According to the NRDC, 42 percent of U.S. bee colonies collapsed in 2015, a number well above the average 31 percent that have been dying each winter for the past decade. The USDA, however, describes Colony Collapse as a “mystery problem” and contends that there is as yet no proven scientific cause for CCD. Many may disagree about its causes, but all can agree with Einstein that preserving the bee population is essential.

Talking About the Birds and the Bees

Although bees are well known for their role as pollinators, they are not the only pollinators that can be attracted to an insect hotel. Other beneficial insects include beetles, butterflies, green lacewings, leaf miners, white flies, mole crickets, cabbage worms, hummingbirds, and bats.

Beetles

Some say that more than one hundred million years ago, beetles were the very first pollinators. Beetles pollinate 88 percent of all flowering plants — that’s more than any other animal.

Hummingbirds

Here’s an interesting factoid about these little birds: hummingbirds pollinate almost exclusively on flowers that hang upside down. By using artificial flowers to feed the birds and then recording them with high-speed footage, researchers discovered that hummingbirds expended 10 percent more energy drinking from upside-down flowers than from right-side-up flowers. They postulated that right-side-up flowers are more exposed to rain, which might dilute their sweet nectar and therefore make them less desirable for hummingbirds.1

Butterflies

Although not as efficient pollinators as bees, butterflies are still important for pollinating gardens. Unlike bees, butterflies can see the color red, which directs them toward the brightly hued blooms. To attract the opposite sex, butterflies emit pheromones, which are very similar to the scents of certain flowers to which other butterflies are attracted.2

Green Lacewings

Green lacewings larvae feast on the eggs and immature stages of numerous soft-bodied insect pests, including many species of spider mites, aphids, thrips, whiteflies, and leafhoppers, as well as the eggs and caterpillars of pest moths and mealybugs.

Bats

In addition to insect hotels, consider placing a bat house in your garden. Some bats are pollinators, while others are “insectivores” that eat insects. In one night out, a single insect-eating bat can consume 60 medium-sized moths or over 1,000 mosquito-sized insects.

Bats arrive after sunset to assist in pest control by consuming garden pests, while others continue the work of pollination when the bees, butterflies, and other insects have left for the day.

Two species of these nocturnal animals are nectar-feeding, the lesser long-nosed bat and the Mexican long-tongued bat. Bats are very important pollinators in tropical and desert climates. Most flower-visiting bats are found in Africa, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific Islands.

The flowers typically of interest to bats are large ones that open at night, are white or pale colors, and emit a musty or rotten scent.

Bats are important pollinators of desert plants such as cacti and agave — from which we get tequila — but they also pollinate much of the vegetation in the rain forest. Over 500 species of fruits and vegetables rely on bats to pollinate their flowers. Avocados, bananas, carob, cashews, cloves, dates, durian, figs, guavas, mangoes, and peaches owe much of their existence to the pollination they have received from these pollinators of the night.3

Insect Hotels: Purchase or DIY?

Different insects require different accommodations in which to thrive. Do a little research about the climate in your area before you decide what kind of insect hotel to buy or make. Each bug habitat performs a different function depending on the location’s climate. In cold climates, they offer a refuge for hibernation, while in warmer climates they function as dry nesting places during the wet season.

While there are many varieties of insect hotels available for purchase, building your own can be a relatively simple, fun, and educational DIY project you can do with children. Using a variety of found natural materials, you can build a bug or bee condo perfect for each type of insect you hope to attract.

Solitary bees and wasps seek places to lay their eggs, so they will be attracted to various-sized holes in wood. They also like to hide out in the open spaces in bamboo poles, which you can cut into small pieces. If drilling holes into wood, vary the sizes from 0.2-0.4 inches in diameter so other species will also fill those spaces. Not-so-nice wood works too: wood-boring beetles love rotting logs.

Reclaimed and repurposed materials such as old pallets, drilled logs, hollow bamboo poles, cardboard tubes, egg cartons, small stones, pieces of concrete and tile, pine cones, pieces of bark, found twigs, dead and rotting wood, hay, plant stems, and discarded planters are some of the kinds of materials that are perfect for constructing a habitat for your garden’s pollination and pest control workforce.

Where to Place the Bug Hotel

A bee hotel needs to be a high-rise to keep away ants, which love dining on bee larvae. Other bug boxes require sheltered but sunny spots surrounded by a variety of flowering and insectary plants (plants that attract and harbor beneficial insects).

Designers from all over the world have created insect hotels that double as works of art. Who knows, maybe you’ll be inspired to build a better insect house – and if all else fails, there’s always ready-made housing you can gift to your bug friends.