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Greening the Arts: Thinkpieces for a zero carbon future and a survey of sustainable arts practices

Blog: Highlights
Verfasser: Lidia Varbanova - Datum: 11 Dez 2010, 21:53

Recently launched collaborative Research in focus “Climate Change: Artists Respond” on LabforCulture aims at investigating whether artistic work and actions can influence sustainability – and if so, how?  We collected diverse viewpoints, made interviews, and summarized results of mapping of arts and cultural organisations, networks, blogs and online resources.  Read the results here.

We continue looking at examples from arts practices and research worrk on the contribution of arts to global discussion related to sustainability. We are aware that only by shared knowledge and experience we might be able to make a change.

Below are several key publications on the topic, included in the recent research paper Greening the Arts: a collaborative mapping of some of the activity and aspirations of the culture sector, produced as part of TippingPoint Australia 2010. The document contains of two sections: six viewpoints by professionals who are passionate about the climate change from variety of perspectives, and a survey of sustainable arts practices. To provoke your interest, below are some of the publications included at the end of the research. Have a look, and read further:

IFACCA D’ART Report No: 34

Arts and Ecological Sustainability

January 2009

Prepared by John Hartley, Arts Council England

This report provides examples of good practice in supporting the arts sector  with creative and practical responses to ecological concerns such as environmental sustainability and climate change, and seeks to identify potential partners to develop future work.


Does the art stop when the persuasion starts?
RSA Arts & Ecology Magazine Features
29 March 2010
Madeleine Bunting
Madeleine Bunting explores the role of art and artists, expectations and purposes in responding to the issue of climate change.

The Rise of Climate Change Art
The Guardian
2 December 2009
Madeleine Bunting
An article on the Rethink exhibition held at the National Gallery of Denmark in Copenhagen.

Climate Change and the Problem of Representation
Australian Humanities Review, May 2009, Issue 46
Emily Potter
This paper offers a rethinking of the role of representation in environmental discourse.

Climate Change: Engagement and Behaviour
Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology
January 2010, Number 347
This report provides an overview of UK attitudes and behaviours relating to climate change. It outlines current approaches and lessons for future policy.
Long Horizons – An Exploration of Art + Climate Change
Julie’s Bicycle
February 2009
Curated by Julie’s Bicycle, Long Horizons is a series of essays debating the impact of climate change on the work of policy makers, scientists and artists. It looks at the inspirational qualities of the arts to demystify and energise the debate. It was commissioned by the British Council and contributors include Antony Gormley, KT Tunstall, Jay Griffiths and Professors Diana Liverman and Tim Jackson.

State of the Arts Conference (UK)
January 2010
The State of the Arts conference was organised in partnership with the RSA and Arts Council England, bringing together over 500 leading artists, entrepreneurs, cultural leaders and policy makers. It examined current and future challenges and opportunities around arts policy, strategy and funding within a time of significant global change. Some transcripts and videos are available on the site.

Culture and the Green Agenda
Arts Professional, Arts and the Environment
03 December 2007, Issue 159
This issue of Arts Professional offers perspectives on arts and the environment including ‘Culture and the Green Agenda’ along with contributions from writers Jane Cooke, Ben Todd and Nick Jones.;issue=159

The Ecological Footprint of Contemporary Art
Maja and Reuben Fowkes are curators and art historians who write extensively on the issue of contemporary art and sustainability. This website provides a synopsis of their current research presented at the Symposium on Sustainability and Contemporary Art held at the Central Euro­pean University, Budapest in 2009. It highlights current issues facing the arts sector in addressing sustainability.

Ecovention: current art to transform ecologies
Sue Spaid
Green Museum, 2002
ISBN0917562747, 9780917562747
The term ecovention combines ecology with invention and is used to describe artist-initiated projects that physically transform an ecology. This book gives examples of artist’s work and offers a unique perspective on what results when art and science merge to create a healthier world.

Reducing art’s carbon footprint: How can we balance the need to preserve artworks, with the need for more ecologically sound museums and galleries?
The Guardian, Art and Design Blog,12 January 2007
Jonathan Glancey

Sustainable Creative Cities: Role of arts in globalised urban context
28th September 2010
Judith Staines
In October 2010, the Asia Europe Foundation (ASEF)’s Connecting Civil Societies of Asia and Europe Conference in Brussels will host a series of expert workshops including Sustainable Creative Cities: the role of arts in a globalised urban context. This feature article for by Judith Staines presents a range of good practices from Asia and Europe, highlighting creative initiatives that address the topic of sustainable creative cities.

Orion Magazine
Orion is a bimonthly magazine focused on nature, the environment, and culture, addressing envi­ronmental and societal issues.

CSPA Quarterly
Centre for Sustainable Practice in the Arts
The CSPA Quarterly explores sustainable arts practices in all genres (performance, visual art and installation, music, and film/video) and policy. The CSPA views sustainability in the arts through environmentalism, economic stability, and cultural infrastructure.




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