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We Are Ocean – Water Walk

Starting on 8 November 2020 anywhere in the world at any time. Check our website https://artport-project.org for updates

WE ARE OCEAN  Water Walk: A global collaborative initiative to re-focus on the importance of water, rivers and ocean, an invitation for public participation.

We are water, rivers, ocean. And these bodies of water are depending on our behavior whether they are healthy or not. And we as humanity are depending on them. Clean rivers, lakes and other bodies of water mean a health ocean. A healthy ocean means healthy humans.

The WE ARE OCEAN – Water Walk wants to gather people from all over the globe to jointly walk towards rivers, lakes, seas, the ocean or even at home (confined due to a global pandemic) around a creatively staged body of water. We want to look at the beauty of water worldwide, what it means for us and what is at stake. We aim at creating a positive, global and collective moment of reflection towards healthy waters, rivers, ocean.

We invite everybody, every generation, every profession, every country, every gender to take a walk for some minutes, several hours, or even days to reflect about the meaning and value of healthy water. It can be a walk of meditation, of poetry, of music, of silence, of workout.

The WE ARE OCEAN – Water Walk is created by several Green Art Lab Alliance Partners (ArteSumaPaz, ARTPORT_making waves, Ayer Ayer, Imago Bubo, Invisible Flock and Knockvologan Studies) to raise awareness about the importance of healthy waters, rivers and ocean and to make clear that even though the COP26 (UN Climate Conference),  which was supposed to start on the 9th of November 2020 in Glasgow, has been postponed to November 2021, we cannot really afford to postpone taking action.

On the day before the Climate Conference would have commenced, we shall start this walk as a reminder, as a community activity gathering people from all over the world without knowing each other. From all over the world we will walk in the direction of Glasgow where the Conference will take place. You are invited to join us in taking action.

We chose Sunday, 08th of November to invite you from all around the planet, to join us on this walk. You can choose the hour and the duration of your walk, it can be minutes, hours or days.

This is the first walk of many which we will undertake until COP26 in 2021 and further. We want to create a civil movement accompanying the UN Decade for Ocean Science and Sustainable Development (2021-2030).

Come on board as individuals, groups of friends, colleagues, families, organisations, neighbors, couples. You can just walk or create a sociable event out of it. The most important idea is that you reflect upon how beautiful water is, how important for life on planet it is, and how much more we should respect, cherish and protect it.

Here are some ideas to help you take action:

1. Turn your phone or camera to the landscape position 

2. Press to record as you walk toward a body of water.

3. IMPORTANT: We would like everything to be captured in a single video so do a continuous recording.

Some suggestions of point-of-views (POV):

a. You can point your camera down on your feet as you start walking and slowly pan up to show the body of water and its surroundings.

b. Bring your camera close to the water show us the state of the water, its colour, living organisms

c. record the area surrounding the body of water; the banks, shore, pathways, flora and fauna, ocean trash, pollution.

d. you are welcome to talk, sing, dance or simply keep silent through the recording

5. After the recording is done send the video to us with these details:

Your name:
Location of recording:
Country, state/ province/ city, name of local area (eg. Singapore, Punggol, Punggol beach):
Date:

Any other details you would like to share.

6. Send the video of approximately 1 minute to: weareocean.waterwalk@gmail.com


WE ARE OCEAN Water Walk is part of the global program WE ARE OCEAN

WE ARE OCEAN is an interdisciplinary art project curated by Anne-Marie Melster and created by ARTPORT_making waves which gathers artists, students, scientists, policymakers, philanthropists, teachers, and curators in order to raise awareness and engage in dialogue about the environmental condition of the ocean and the role humans play in its current and future state. The project events in Berlin and Brandenburg investigated how we interact with the ocean and how interdependent humans and the ocean are. The overall goal was to raise scientific and political awareness through the arts, particularly among young people, to stimulate behavioural change and social action and help them to act responsibly and become conscientious citizens. Ultimately, WE ARE OCEAN seeks to shift the narrative surrounding the ocean – from that of an ocean for human use and exploitation with infinite resources – to an ocean that offers numerous yet precarious benefits to humankind which is its steward and caretaker.

In 2019 we started in Berlin and Brandenburg, in August 2020 we traveled virtually to Kiel (Germany) as part of the Ocean Summit, in September we were in Marseille (France) as part of Manifesta 13 with artist Marc Johnson, from October on we will be in Vancouver (Canada) (our Vancouver artists T’uy’tanat Cease Wyss and Olivier Salvas will work virtually with Vancouver school students),  ifrom November on we will virtually travel WE ARE OCEAN to the Ocean Space in Venice (Italy) (as part of the exhibition of Territorial Agency and our invited artists are Pietro Consolandi and Fabio Cavallari from Barena Bianca) with more stops to follow from 2021 to 2030, since we will support the whole UN Ocean Decade.

WE ARE OCEAN Berlin/Brandenburg, Marseille, Venice and Vancouver are artistic projects officially contributing to the Preparatory Phase of the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development:

Weblink


Thanks to GALA for connecting this group of collaborators:

Seeking a (CO)LEAD EDITOR for CSPA QUARTERLY

The CSPA QUARTERLY is currently seeking a (Co) Lead Editor to work with our current Lead Editor in sustaining the publication and transitioning to eventually become a Lead Editor themselves. 

The CSPA Quarterly is a publication arm of the Centre for Sustainable Arts. It is meant to give a longer format and deeper space for exploration than some online platforms provide, and to reflect the myriad ways in which sustainability in the arts is discussed, approached and practiced. The publication features reviews, interviews, features, artist pages, essays, reflections and photos. It is a snapshot of a moment in time, a look at the many discussions in sustainability and the arts through the lens of a particular theme. It is part of a rigorous dialogue.

Our reach is wide: we want it to be wider.

We have more than 6,000  followers on social media, more than 1,500 subscribers to our email newsletter, our website receives 3,500-6,000 hits per month. Our CSPA Quarterly is accessed by institutions and  artists worldwide via JSTOR and other platforms. We are a crucial resource for artists and art organizations who are researching,  embodying, promoting and re-inventing sustainability. 

This Co-Lead Editor would work with us to:

  • Assist in developing an archival, digital publication of the CSPA Quarterly
  • Assist in developing and sustaining new income streams for the CSPA Quarterly
  • Plan issues for 2024 and beyond, assuming sole Lead Editorship in that year
  • Sustain the Quarterly and its continued relevance. 

This is a volunteer position. We know how that sounds. Currently, the CSPA works within a hybrid academic/commercial context, where the labor of editing and contributing is seen as an extension of academic research, and is therefore unpaid. It currently exists and functions  on systems of privilege, based on the income, time, and access of  its  organizers. That’s a problem we want to change. 

Our current income streams include:

  • Fees from publication access on JSTOR
  • University Grants 
  • Issue purchases on MagCloud
  • Subscriptions on Patreon

Right now, these incomes only cover Quarterly design costs. But we’d like to change that. We’re looking for someone to help us amplify our current efforts at generating revenue and supporting our contributors. We want to pay people. The Lead Editor position at the Quarterly has always been volunteer/unpaid, with contributors and Guest Editors receiving a free subscription for their work.

We’d like to build on our crucial work thus  far, and stand even more firmly at the nexus between academic and popular research in Sustainable Practice in the Arts. We’re seeking someone with resources that would enable them to engage in this work, and who could use those resources to expand our platform to those who do not have  such  access. We need someone who is passionate about our efforts, extending opportunities to others, and amplifying the fantastic work of the many artists engaging with sustainability on a cultural, ecological, social and economic level.  We hope that person is you. 

Please send letters of interest and a website or CV to editor@sustainablepractice.org

NAC – Theatre and Climate Change Green Rooms 2020

As part of its response to the escalating climate crisis – and in light of the current COVID-19 pandemic – NAC English Theatre in partnership with Festival of Live Digital Art (FOLDA), the Canada Council for the Arts, The City of Kingston, HowlRound Theatre Commons, National Theatre School of Canada and York University brought together participants for an extraordinary three-day/three-country digital experiment that reflected on the future of theatre.

The Green Rooms were fueled with spirited conversations with leaders in fields such as climate activism, ecological economy and environmental humanities, as well as with theatre artists and leaders who have found innovative ways to engage with the climate crisis.

A limited number of active participants joined the event on Zoom from eight cities across three countries: Vancouver, Winnipeg, Toronto, Kingston, Montreal, and Halifax, as well as London (U.K.) and New York. In addition, a livestream of the event was accessible to spectators everywhere.

Please note: If participants were not in one of those cities, they were still able to participate by joining the city closest or most meaningful to them.

We invite you to view the proceedings recorded and available on this site and read the reports too!

Co-curated by Sarah Garton Stanley and Chantal Bilodeau.

All Green Rooms events are in English only

Summit Report

Green Rooms: Carbon Emissions Report

The Green Rooms Report

To view the event archive videos and more info

ecoconsciousness fall 2020 online + billboard show

What does it mean to have an ecoconsciousness? The works here offer multiple answers to that question. ecoconsciousness measures our interconnectivity with the natural world. It celebrates our links to the animals with whom we share the planet, to the trees, fruits, vegetables, herbs and insects that make life possible, to the land and waters that bear witness to our best and worst impulses and to the ecological systems that sustain us all. It encompasses our awareness both of the beauty of nature and the devastating horrors created by our efforts to exploit it. It manifests itself in artworks that bring the perilous consequences of our actions to our attention through striking images, immersive installations, evocative performances and rituals and practical proposals. It engages with fields as diverse as science, technology, poetry, politics, history, anthropology, art history and futurism. And it poses questions about our place in the cosmos with wit, sorrow, anger and hope.  

Eleanor Heartney, Juror

fall 2020

Selected artists include: (80)

Anita Arliss, Audrey An, Ulrike Arnold, Frejya Bardell, Resa Blatman, Casey Brown, Barbara Boissevain, Kellie Bornhoft, Hilary Brace, Sukey Bryan, Claudia Bucher, Diane Burko, Pamela Casper, Elisabeth Condon, Gigi Conot, Madelaine Corbin, Xavier Cortada, Shirley Crow, Matthew Crowther, Cameron Davis, Nicole Dextras, Jeanne Dunn, Jesse Etelson, Sarah Fairchild, Doug Fogelson, Fredericka Foster, Andrea Frank, Maru Garcia, Stephanie Garon, Helen Glazer, Jon Goldman, Alexander Heilner, Lyn Horton, Virginia Katz, Robin Lasser, Carrie Lederer, Margaret LeJeune, Ellen Levy, J.J. L’Heureux, Sujin Lim, Pam Longobardi, Linda MacDonald, Nancy Macko, Ana MacArthur, Liz McGowan, Constance Mallinson, Nancy Winship Milliken, Seren Morey, Zea Morvitz, Scott Norris, Diana Cheren Nygren, Lil Olive, Caitlin Parker, Deanna Pindell, Aviva Rahmani, Andrea Reynosa, Jennifer Rife, Shana Robbins, John Sabraw, Cherie Sampson, Diana Scarborough, Gregg Schlanger, Leslie Sobel, Anne-Katrin Spiess, Dawn Stetzel, Amber Stucke, Gina Telcocci, Jane Troup, Barry Underwood, Ruth Wallen, Charlotte Watts, Riva Weinstein, Brad Wilson, Adam Wolpert, Chin Chin Yang, Amy Youngs, Raheleh Zomorodinia.

Billboard artists: Diane Best, Rebecca Clark, and L.C. Armstrong

ecoartspace, LLC

Mailing address: PO Box 5211 Santa Fe, New Mexico 87502

ecoartspace member exhibitions

5 Facets of Humanity: Intra-human, Meta-human, Post-human, Supra-human, Trans-human, a group exhibition including Gary Brewer and Virginia Katz. Fellows of Contemporary Art (FOCA), Los Angeles, CA. October 3 – December 12, 2020. Virtual reception October 3, 2020 at 5pm.  

Emotional Numbness: The impact of war on the human psyche and ecosystems. Includes Minoosh ZomorodiniaCarol NewborgAlicia Escott, and Judith Selby Lang. WEAD, Women Eco Artists Dialogue. Online through October 19, 2020.

Victoria Wagner: Everglow, recent paintings and sculpture. Maybaum Gallery, San Francisco, CA. Through October 14, 2020.

Stephanie Garon: Recede The Plain. Installation at Alchemy of Art, Baltimore, MD. Through November 1, 2020.

Hunt for the Lost. A participatory public art project launched August 11 by Aviva Rahmani. Through November 3, 2020.

Listening in the Anthropocene, group exhibition of twenty-five artists including a recent video meditation titled A forecast of storm (Derbarl Yerrigan) by Perdita Phillips. Curated by the Creative Practice Circle, Australia. Online.

Seedscapes: Future-Proofing Nature. A group exhibition including Sant Khalsa. Impressions Gallery, Bradford, United Kingdom. Through December 12, 2020. 

Rising Tides: Contemporary Art and The Ecology of Water, including Emily Brown,Diane BurkoStacy Levy. Michener Art Museum, Doylestown, PA. Through January 10, 2021.

She is Here, Studio Artist Program, Retrospective Group Show includes a video installation titled Onar (repair the dream) by Pam Longobardi. Atlanta Contemporary, GA.Through January 31, 2021.

Broken Poems of Butterflies, solo exhibition by Etsuko Ichikawa using radioactive materials to shape artworks and video footage of haunting beauty. Jordan Schntizer Museum of Art, Pullman, WA. Through March 20, 2021.

Do you have an exhibition coming up? Please email the information to info@ecoartspace.org to be included in upcoming newsletters.

Above: Gary Brewer5 Facets of Humanity, installation at FOCA, Los Angeles. 

Green Tease October Meetup

Book your spot at this meetup on Eventbrite.

This is the sixth in an ongoing series of informal meetups that Creative Carbon Scotland organised following COVID-19 physical distancing measures as a way for ecological and artistic minded people of all kinds to keep in touch. Each session has a rough theme for discussion but the conversation is usually wide ranging and open. Alongside these informal meetups, we are also organising more elaborate creative online events that you can keep track of on our website

Following the vote at our last meetup, the theme for this session is ‘COP26: what is it? what’s going on? and what can we do?’

Book your space through Eventbrite and you will receive a link to join an online call on the day of the meetup. You do not need to download an app or programme to join the call; you just need a computer or other device with internet connection, speakers, and a microphone.

Feel free to get in touch at lewis.coenen-rowe@creativecarbonscotland.com if you have anything questions or anything you want to suggest.

Virtual Conference: Institutional Approaches to Sustainability

INSTITUTIONAL APPROACHES TO SUSTAINABILITY — A virtual conference series by Art/Switch


October 31, 2020 from 4-7 pm CET on zoom. 

This conference is part of our virtual trilogy [re]Framing the Arts: A Sustainable Shift, organized in collaboration with the Amsterdam School for Heritage, Memory and Material Culture at the University of Amsterdam and Nyenrode Business University.

This first edition, Institutional Approaches to Sustainability, is dedicated to the structural and institutional shifts towards a carbon zero arts sector. We will discuss the options for an environmentally sustainable building, investigate the organizational choices behind sustainable storage facilities, and learn about sustainable climate control systems.

The speakers will also discuss how we might engage both individual operations and those on an international scale in adopting practices in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals. If sustainability is an organizational priority, how can we adopt a holistic approach within our institutions and take responsibility for our actions?


We are very excited to start the fall with this first edition of [re]Framing the Arts and are looking forward to rethinking, renewing, and connecting towards a climate-conscious future.


Tickets are donation-based: https://www.artswitch.org/ticketing-1


SPEAKERS

Sarah Sutton & Stephanie ShapiroSustainable Museums
A Post-”Plus/Minus Dilemma” Reboot: Where are we Now, Where are we going?

Samantha OwensGlenstone Museum
Glenstone: A Case Study in Sustainable Measures for a Contemporary Museum

Foekje BoersmaNational Library of the Netherlands
High-tech and Low-key Storage Solution for the National Library Collections

Sofie Öberg MagnussonNational Museums of World Culture
Sustainable Organization of Art Institutions – Experiences and Reflections Underway

Discussion lead and moderated by: Paula Toppila, Executive Director of Pro Arte Foundation Finland and IHME Helsinki and Saara Korpela, Eco-Coordinator for IHME Helsinki; Frame Contemporary Art Finland; HIAP, and Mustarinda.

The conference will take place on October 31, 2020 from 4-7pm CET on zoom. 

For questions, contact us at info@artswitch.org

TREE TALK: Artists Speak For Trees

Tree Talk: Artists Speak For Trees

Thursday, October 29
10am PT, 11am MT, 12pm CT, 1pm ET

EUROPE: Scotland/Ireland/England:18:00 GMT, Belgium/Germany/Spain: 19:00 UTC

Casey Lance Brown, Bia Gayotto, Jennifer Gunlock, Tracy Taylor Grubbs, Marion Wilson

The beauty and mystery of trees has long been a subject for artists, and more recently, concern for the survival of forests (the lungs of our planet) has been paramount. Each month, artists working in a diversity of media share their artworks and ideas about these most essential and extraordinary living beings. Additionally, guest speakers including scientists, writers and activists are invited to present their work and contribute to the dialogue.

Tree Talk is moderated by Sant Khalsa, ecofeminist artist and activist, whose work has focused on critical environmental and societal issues including forests and watersheds for four decades.
 
Co-sponsored by Joshua Tree Center for Photographic Arts

Members and one guest are free. General Public can attend for a $10. Capacity is 100 participants. All participants MUST REGISTER.

Member Presenters:

Casey Lance Brown will trace the tangled paths that led to kudzu’s outsized reputation as the posterchild of invasive plants, touching on the xenophobic, regionalist, and moralizing tropes that (mis)guided the way. Exaggerated statistics lead to exaggerated labeling, which leads to his own exaggerated series on the subject. Brown is an American multidisciplinary artist who studied at Duke University, Harvard Design School, and as a fellow of the American Academy in Rome. His work often reveals the perverse ways in which human systems use, abuse, and adapt to the planet’s surface. Originally trained as a landscape architect, he fabricates super-resolution images to dramatize the novel environments of the Anthropocene. Each image series focuses on a landscape type that was/is/will be abandoned when our collective fickle attention and economic speculation move on to greener pastures. caseylancebrown.com

 

Bia Gayotto is a multimedia artist and curator whose interdisciplinary approach combines photography, video, installations and books, with elements of research, documentation, performance and collaboration. Memoirs is a photographic series of tree stumps. In post-production Gayotto uses a process that filters light, and like an X-ray reveals details not seen by the naked eye. The marks that emerge from this process are similar to DNA, a history of the inner life of trees. The series raises questions about life and decay, deforestation and global warming, in hopes to protect tens of thousands of trees that might vanish in our lifetimes. Gayotto earned her MFA from the University of California, Los Angeles in 1996 and her work has been featured in exhibitions Internationally. biagayotto.com

Jennifer Gunlock will present her perception of how trees and plants are regarded and handled in contemporary Western culture. Our economy’s obsession with ownership and dominance, as opposed to working in partnership with plants, is expressed here. In her work she often creates fictional, possible future landscapes long after a civilization has vanished, where nature has over the length of time adapted to, and thrived in, this new habitat. Gunlock, who is based in Long Beach, California, embeds photographs from her travels into her collage-drawings. She received her MFA at California State University, Long Beach and has exhibited at Descanso Gardens, Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery, and Angels Gate Cultural Center. She has been Artist in Residence at Cill Rialaig in Ireland and PLAYA in Oregon, among others. jennifergunlock.com

Tracy Taylor Grubbs, a painter and multi-disciplinary artist, will discuss her Listening Project Series that focuses on mark making in collaboration with natural forces including trees and forests near the Pt. Reyes National Seashore. Her work is positioned at the intersection of nature, culture and spirituality. Grubbs employs repetition and chance operations in her time-based work opening new dialogues with nature, and reframing her understanding of time and place. For several years she worked on environmental restoration and conservation projects in California. Her work has been shown in museums and galleries in the U.S. and abroad. Grubbs studied art and art history at the San Francisco Art Institute, U.C. Berkeley and the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. She received her B.A. in Environmental Studies and Political Philosophy from St. Lawrence University. She lives and works in San Francisco, California. tracygrubbs.com

Marion Wilson investigates ecology and landscape to foster a closer connection to self and place in her work. Through photographs, paintings and installations she interrogates relations to nature at a time when extreme climate change threatens ecosystems, livelihoods, and communities. Wilson builds collaborative partnerships with botanists, architects, and urban communities by accessing individual expertise and working non-hierarchically. Her studio practice explores industrialized landscapes, useful and stress tolerant botanies, with a special interest in moss. Wilson was an Associate Professor at Syracuse University from 2007-17, where she institutionalized an art curriculum called New Directions in Social Sculpture employing recycled materials and unlikely collaborations to revitalize urban spaces. Wilson is the founder of MLAB and the Mobile Field Station, an eco/art lab in a renovated RV, and 601 Tully, the renovation of an abandoned residence turned drug house into a neighborhood art museum on the westside of Syracuse, NY. marionwilson.com

Gif Image above: ©Casey Lance Brown, Hunting for Kudzilla I, 2019, digitial composit on dye-infused metallic print, 50 x 40 inches; ©Jennifer Gunlock, Backcountry II, 2020, mixed media paper collage and drawing on panel, 36 x 36 inches;©Tracy Taylor Grubbs, Tree Listening, Point Reyes, CA, 2017-2019, gathering marks on canvas, (installation view); ©Bia Gayotto, Memoirs (written by trees), 2020, archival inkjet print on 100% cotton rag, 20 x 20 inches; ©Marion Wilson, The Landscape is Sanctuary to Our Fears, 2020 (installation at William Paterson University, Court Gallery).

ecoartspace dialogues: ecofeminism

Thursday, October 15

USA: 10am PT, 11am MT, 12pm CT, 1pm ET

EUROPE: Scotland/Ireland/England:18:00 GMT, Belgium/Germany/Spain: 19:00 UTC

During the last two Performative Dialogues in September the role of ritual, the spiritual, and healing of the Earth and self have been recurring themes in artists work. For this dialogue we will continue to explore these areas within the framework of feminism and environmental issues with five of our members who have made ecofeminist works since the 1970s.

Three artists included in Performative Ecologies will discuss their work in the exhibition including Fern ShafferDominique Mazeaud and Bonnie Ora Sherk. Members Betsy Damon and Gilah Yelin Hirsch will also join in the discussion and members Gloria Orenstein and Mary Jo Aaguerston will participate as respondents.

Please review the links below to familiarize yourself with current thinking on ecofeminism as it relates to ecoart or ecological art in preparation for what promises to be a rich discussion, one for the archive. This will be in the style of a Webinar format. Participants will be muted and we ask that you turn off your video feature. The dialogue will be recorded for 1.5 hours. Additional Q&A will go to 2 hours maximum.

ecofeminism (Prezi) class presentation CLICK HERE

our changing climate (video) CLICK HERE

ecofeminism to escape collapse CLICK HERE

Member Presenters:

Bonnie Ora Sherk is an environmental performance sculptor, landscape architect, planner, educator, and founder of A Living Library. Her pioneering conceptual performances in the 1970s evolved into systemically integrated community programs and/or hands-on transformative, interdisciplinary curriculum. Sherk founded Crossroads Community (the farm) in 1974, a pioneering, urban agriculture, environmental education, multi-arts, community gathering place that incorporated a major freeway interchange in San Francisco. She has staged several performance-based interventions that bring the experience of nature into unexpected locations including “pop-up” parklets.

Fern Shaffer is an American painter, performance artist, lecturer and environmental advocate. Her work arose in the 1980s in conjunction with an emerging Ecofeminism movement that brought together environmentalism, feminist values and spirituality to address shared concern for the Earth and all forms of life. She has been a long-time activist for women in art through her involvement and leadership at the Chicago alternative art space Artemisia Gallery and through her work with the National Women’s Caucus for Art. Shaffer’s ritual work was featured on the cover and written about in The Reenchantment of Art by Suzi Gablik in 1991.

Dominique Mazeaud came to the US from France in 1967. She lived in New York City for twenty years and in 1979 attended Experience Week at Findhorn, the ecovillage in Scotland, where a deep artistic path was revealed to her through mystical experiences in nature. “What is the spiritual in art in our time?” then became the question that guided her work, and still to this day. In 1987 Mazeaud moved to Santa Fe, where her encounters with the Rio Grande inspired over twenty performative projects to date including The Great Cleansing of the Rio Grande 1987-1994, featured in Suzi Gablik’s The Reenchantment of Art published in 1991.

Gilah Yelin Hirsch is a multidisciplinary artist, whose art, films, papers, books have been exhibited and published internationally since 1968. She has received numerous grants and awards for her “innovative blending of science and art revealing existing relationships between forms in nature, forms in human physiology and the forms that are present in all alphabets.” Hirsch was a founder of the Feminist Art Movement (LACWA, Los Angeles Council of Women Artists) in California in the early 70s and in the early 80’s was a pioneer in psychoneuroimmunology focusing on the power of art to heal.

Betsy Damon is an internationally-recognized artist whose public work and living systems, such as the Living Water Garden, have received widespread acclaim. She directs Keepers of the Waters, a nonprofit focused on ecological planning, advocacy and education. Damon was a semi-finalist for the Buckminster Fuller Award and a finalist for the Stockholm Water Prize. Damon has lectured widely in the U.S., Europe and China, and has been a visiting artist at countless colleges and universities.

Member Respondents:

Gloria Orenstein is a feminist art critic, pioneer in the field of the women of Surrealism and scholar of ecofeminism in the arts. In 1987, she co-created an ecofeminist conference titled ECOFEMINIST Perspectives: Culture, Nature, Theory at the University of Southern California, and in 1990 co-edited the book Reweaving the World: The Emergence of ecofeminism, which is considered a seminal ecofeminist text. Orenstein later apprenticed with a Samiland Shaman.

Mary Jo Aagerstoun is an art historian and environmental activist from West Palm Beach. She founded EcoArt South Florida, 2008-2015, a nonprofit ecological art advocacy organization that sponsored more than a dozen projects. She’s currently working on a book, Living on the Edge: Ecological Art for the Anthropocene (provisional title), a study of twelve ecological art projects, which she will examine through the lens of recent ecofeminist theory.

Gif images (top): Bonnie Ora Sherk, Sitting Still I, 1970. Army Street/101 Freeway Interchange Construction Zone, San Francisco. ©Bonnie Ora Sherk; Gilah Yelin Hirsch, Forming, 1979, oil on linen, 36 inches diameter ©Gilah Yelin Hirsch; Betsy Damon, The Memory of Clean Water, 1985 ©Betsy Damon; Fern Shaffer in collaboration with Othello Anderson, Winter Solstice, Lake Michigan, Illinois, 1985 ©Fern Shaffer; Dominique Mazeaud, The Great Cleansing of the Rio Grande (1987-1992) ©Dominique Mazeaud.

Seas of the Outer Hebrides

We believe that collaborative, creative approaches can support knowledge-gathering and problem-solving processes, particularly, but not necessarily, where participants have different backgrounds, interests, expectations or hopes. They can work particularly well in community consultations to bring together community members and local government or organisational teams wanting to create a shared vision.  

In 2019, Creative Carbon Scotland partnered with the Marine Protected Area Management and Monitoring (MarPAMM) project to bring inclusive, creative approaches to the Seas of the Outer Hebrides (SEASOH) project. Our involvement arose from the project team’s desire for an inspiring, different and accessible way to work with the Outer Hebrides communities. We are proud to be supporting their key aim – to build a shared vision for Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) in the region – by involving artists and creative practices to help explore the cultural dimension of residents’ relationship to their seas.

stunning aqua-green sea, white sandy beach with mountains in background; Isle of Lewis

MarPAMM is a cross-border environment project, funded by the EU’s INTERREG VA programme, to develop tools for monitoring and managing a number of protected coastal marine environments in Ireland, Northern Ireland and Western Scotland.

The SEASOH project will deliver a regional management plan for the Outer Hebrides Marine Region, putting communities and people at the heart of the process and building consensus on the future management of MPAs in the islands. Comhairle nan Eilean SiarMarine ScotlandNatureScot and the University of the Highlands and Islands are supporting the delivery of effective MPA management.

Project activities

July 2019
We attended a series of events held by the SEASOH team during July 2019 aimed at creating an inclusive environment for listening to any views or concerns, and providing information about the SEASOH project and its aims. During this time we also met with local artists and cultural organisations to build our understanding of existing arts activities and inform our ideas for hosting creative workshops across the Outer Hebrides.

September 2019
Our first series of events were co-organised with the Hebridean International Film Festival, where we held conversations alongside film screenings, connecting the film festival themes, ‘Islands, environments and remote communities’, to community members’ perceptions and experience of the marine environment. Participants also contributed drawings to a short animation produced following the festival themed around the local marine environment.

February 2020

Seas of the Outer Hebrides 2

In February 2020, we co-ordinated a series of family friendly, creative workshops on Lewis, Harris, North and South Uist with local artists Kirsty O’Connor (North Uist) and Sandra Kennedy (Lewis), alongside the Seas of the Outer Hebrides team. These workshops interwove creative activities, including mono-printing using found objects from the shoreline and origami paper boat making with conversations about marine protection, what benefits communities derived from the sea, and their hopes and fears for the future.

Next steps
mono-printing using found objects from the shoreline; abstract shapes in greys, greens and reds, reminiscent of the sea

Through these events and an online community survey the SEASOH project was able to gain a deeper understanding of communities’ priorities for the marine environment as well as the less tangible aspects of peoples’ lived experience and relationship to the sea, which will inform the development of marine management plans that reflect the interests and concerns of communities living and working in the Outer Hebrides.

We are continuing our discussions with the SEASOH team, despite a pause in progress due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We will update this page to coincide with the project’s progress as it occurs.


SEASOH is part of our culture/SHIFT programme. 

The SEASOH logo was created by Loom Graphics, an independent graphic design studio based in the Outer Hebrides.

Image credits: Seilebost beach, Isle of Lewis – Paolo Chiabrando on Unsplash; workshop images – Creative Carbon Scotland

Marpamm and interreg logos for Seas of the Outer Hebrides project