The virus speaks #3

June 26, 2020 by

The previous pieces have focused on the ways that the virus might be speaking to us. Three pieces have been published recently by people who have been living with chronic illness.

Caroline Gausden suggested Johanna Hedva who lives with chronic illness and their ‘Sick Woman Theory‘ is for those who were never meant to survive but did.

She also introduced me to someone who shared Claire Cunningham’s piece ‘Conflict of Interests‘.

And Alec Finlay published ‘I am protecting myself, but I don’t feel protected‘.



#artopps ‘Becoming Earthly’ @TheBarnArts

June 23, 2020 by
John Newling. Dear Nature, 2018. Courtesy the artist

John Newling. Dear Nature, 2018. Courtesy the artist

Becoming Earthly (building on Bruno Latour) reflects a need to develop a shift in perspective towards care for the thin skin of the earth that is the atmosphere and topsoil on which all life depends. We surprisingly know very little about this skin.

The Barn is inviting applications from artists working across all media who are looking to address this challenge.

This is a chance to connect with a host of brilliant ecological artists and thinkers to develop personal practices. Sessions will be hosted by artist John Newling (see exhibition review from March), artist researcher Wallace Heim (founder Editor of the Ashden Directory), philosopher Johan Siebers and anthropologist and feldenkrais practitioner Paolo Maccagno.

Read More (and find Application criteria)

Deadline: 10 July 2020

Opportunity PhD studentship: Assessing arts-based interventions for sustainable practice

June 12, 2020 by

Deadline: 3 July

Assessing arts-based interventions for sustainable practice will observe a range of creative interventions, critically reflect upon them as both artistic creations and mechanisms for change within an Energy and Environmental Humanities framework, and develop a portable qualitative framework for the design and assessment of arts-based interventions.

Creative Carbon Scotland

Find a PhD for full details

#ArtOpps Sustainability First Art Prize

May 14, 2020 by

Sustainability First

Building from the corona crisis towards a sustainable future

The corona pandemic is currently affecting every area of peoples’ lives across the globe. As we emerge from the crisis, how do we ensure a sustainable recovery – which balances economic, social and environmental wellbeing? Sustainability First is launching an Art Prize to invite original, radical ideas and visions in response to the question ‘How do we build from the current corona crisis towards a more sustainable future?’

The Sustainability First Art Prize is open to all living British and international artists based in the UK, established and emerging, over the age of 18 years. Images of up to 3 works can be submitted online only per person. The works must be original, created in any media – including but not limited to painting, drawing, mixed media, sculpture, video and installation.

More information here

#ArtOpps #COP26 ‘One Ocean’

May 13, 2020 by

Inge Paneels asked us to share this.

We are seeking participants to take part in a on-day workshop with up to 20 climate scientists, data specialists and artists on the theme of One Ocean on Thursday 28th of May 2020, from 2-5pm. As we are seeking a diverse group, please drop us an email with a line or two or short paragraph on why you would like to take part, what expertise you bring to the table and what you hope to get out of it?

Please email to by 5pm on 22nd of May if you wish to participate. Further information here COP26 – ProposalMay2020

#arts4cop26 meetup report

May 4, 2020 by

How does the Covid-19 pandemic, the lockdown and social distancing challenge artists’ thinking about making work addressing the #COP26 UNFCCC Climate Change talks scheduled for Glasgow?

More than 70 artists, scientists, curators and organisational leaders met up on Wednesday 29 April 2020 to discuss how the arts can address COP26. In planning before the Covid-19 lockdown, the meeting happened through video conferencing, hosted by Stop Climate Chaos Scotland working with Creative Carbon Scotland and ecoartscotland. Friends of the Earth kindly lent the conferencing capacity.

Discussion ranged over practical and conceptual issues – when would the COP be rescheduled? Where could the Civil Society space be hosted? Was the role of the arts to provide a warm ‘Scottish’ and Glaswegian welcome for delegates, or to offer alternative ways of imagining ourselves within the lifeweb? To add vibrancy to Marches and gatherings or to explore how the current lockdown can help us imagine degrowth and lower impacts on the planet? Kat Jones from Stop Climate Chaos Scotland highlighted the new Climate Fringe website as a key resource for programming and planning.

Wallace Heim offered some opening thoughts on the arts in relation to the COP, drawing on experiences from Creative Carbon Scotland’s programme for COP21.

Recent articles have highlighted many environmental changes during the lockdown, but the actual temporary one-off reduction in CO2 emissions isn’t likely to meet the necessary permanent year on year reduction mandated in the Paris Agreement. This raised issues about the impact of personal choices versus the need for structural change. What does this mean for how we imagine the future, and how can the arts help us understand these conundrums?

The key messages from the meeting were:

  • Climate change (crisis, emergency) is happening everywhere. It is vital that Glasgow as a venue for a negotiation doesn’t overshadow the need for imagining and implementing the necessary structural, political, business and personal changes everywhere.
  • The COP was a two-week event in November 2020 which is now happening sometime in 2021 but the bigger moment, the chance to address the crisis and avoid the worst impacts, is now and across this decade. Doing something for COP needs to be part of a much larger commitment to change. The arts are being forced to adapt by the pandemic and this is an opportunity to imagine a much wider adaptation to a low carbon (low travel, low production, low consumption, low busyness, local food) future.
  • The (over)developed North needs to listen to the rest of the world, the indigenous and island peoples, the other-than-human voices, the already climate refugees.
    The discussion will continue on various platforms and another meeting will be called when the revised date for COP26 is announced.

Ways to keep in touch:

Facebook #arts4cop26

‘cop26-general’ list on riseup

Also Slack ‘cop26coalition’

Green Tease network as a means of finding other people to work with, publicise things, etc. :
If people from working groups want to organise things to follow-up, they can apply for support and (a little bit of) funding through the Green Tease open call:

Green Arts Initiative as a means of finding environmentally engaged arts organisations across Scotland:

Previous meetings:

IS THIS IT? Looking towards COP26

Notes from the December meeting


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