21-23 December, 2012
Invitation to a Dialogue on Learning: Why
children make toys & Why children play
An interesting experiment is happening in a small school near Pune, India, at
the Sadhana school. The teachers are being re-oriented to become learners, so
that they understand how a child learns naturally and understand how their own
true learning has taken place. They are re examining how a child learns and what
the child learns.
This is an invitation to a dialogue on learning, play and toys: exploring the
reason why children play and why the toys adults make disorient the children's
natural learning process. We are inviting people who are interested in a fresh
and first hand inquiry to understand how play and cognitive development are
connected in making sense of the world. One of the things we are keen is to
understand how children use mathematical and science principles in their play
and making of toys. How they develop their sense of order and beauty etc. We at
Sadhana village school has been exploring to provide a free environment for
children to make sense of their world. We have been documenting various things
children do. We, adults have termed it as play which is not considered as
learning. Learning for us is when children have a book in their hand; it is
connected with words. As we have been observing and documenting children from
last year onwards some of these aspects are being challenged. Children also make
their toys as they play and there is a strong connection in everything they
do.There is nothing random about why they do what they do.
From June 2011, the adult members of the Sadhana village school have been
documenting children. Apart from videos they have also been documenting their
conversations and images on what children make. They have created an environment
of freedom so that children could do what they feel like. They have not provided
any toys nor the so called educational toys.There were very important lessons
that they learned from this experience. Based on this they held a samvaad in
April 2012 on ‘What children learn naturally’. This exploration is helping them
to re-examine the content or the so-called curricula. And now they are planning
another one on ‘Why children play and what toys children make’ in December 21-23 in Pune.
They will be uploading a few videos in the sadhana village Facebook page. They
are also keen to work with schools that are keen to make their 'teachers' in to
'learners'. They would like to initiate common sense research among teachers to
understand children first-hand rather than believing in theories of Montessori,
Steiner, Piaget, Vygotsky, Dewey, etc. This is not to challenge any of these
great people work but to pay homage to them by being authentic ourselves.
25 November - 21 December, 2012
Kathmandu International Art Festival 2012: Earth|Body|Mind
The Siddhartha Arts Foundation is pleased to announce that the 2nd Kathmandu
International Art Festival will take place from November 25 to December 21,
2012. Titled ‘Earth|Body|Mind’, the Festival is dedicated to one of the most
critical issues of the 21st century – climate change.
Climate change is not
an isolated phenomenon. It is happening globally and similarly, action is needed
globally, down from the grassroots level up to the policy makers of a nation. As
a critical creative form, art provides a platform for the society to think,
analyze and reason. Artists, therefore, are in a unique position to highlight
problems of climate change, generate awareness and create dialogues in the
public through their artworks.
We invite national and international artists and curators to partake in this
event, to create and establish a much-needed global social change.
KIAF is the biggest art event held in Kathmandu, Nepal. Organized by Siddhartha
Art Gallery, the first non-profit Festival was held from October 30 to November
111 artists from 25 countries showcased their visual interpretations on the
Festival’s theme ‘Separating Myth from Reality – Status of Women’. Attended by
over 5000 visitors in 6 venues, the event was described by the Mondriaan
Foundation ‘an extraordinary project’ and as ‘dawn of a new era’ by national
daily The Himalayan Times.
3-5 December, 2012
Global Exhibit Forum 2012
Visby, Gotland, Sweden
The Global Exhibit
Forum is Sweden’s largest conference and prime meeting place for professionals
working with the exhibition medium. The conference takes place in the premises
of Swedish Exhibition Agency on the island of Gotland in December 2012. The
programme containes more than 60 lectures and workshops focused on everything
from new technology, audience involvement, marketing and contemporary art to
trend-spotting for future exhibitions and global perspectives.
We Have to Go In in Order to Come Out?
14:00 – 14:45 (T47,
Swedish; followed by panel discussion at 15:00, event T48)
On the Relationship Between Exhibitions and Nature — Part 1
chair: Tomas Carlsson,
Developer • Riksutställningar
The first part of this two-part seminar will present four perspectives on how
exhibitions and exhibitors relate to nature. Ecologist Pella Larsdotter Thiel
talks about responsibility for the global climate, biologist Staffan Åkeby about
zoos and ”living exhibitions”, anthropologist
Jan van Boeckel about art-based environmental education and nature as an
exhibition space, and architect Mattias Lind about exhibition buildings.
15:00 – 15:45 (T48, Swedish; follows event T47 at 14:00)
Discussion: Do We Have to Go In, in Order to Come Out?
On the Relationship Between Exhibitions and Nature — Part 2
The second part of this
two-part seminar will be a panel discussion of exhibitors’ relationship and
responsibility to nature. Among the questions to be addressed: Do we have to go
in, in order to come out — are “temples” such as nature centres needed in order
to experience nature? How can art teach us something about environmental issues,
and can artworks in nature contribute to deeper experience of nature? Should
exhibitions be Internet-based so that we can avoid expending our CO2 quotas on
visits to museums?
Panel: Staffan Åkeby, retired biologist and zoo director whose current
activities include chairing the Skåne Ornithological Society; Pella Larsdotter
Thiel, ecologist, nature guide and activist; Mattias Lind, an architect who has
won numerous architectural competitions and has received several international
and Swedish awards; and Jan van Boeckel, Dutch cultural anthropologist, painter
and documentary film-maker who has previously worked in Sweden but is currently
conducting research at the Aalto University School of Arts, Design and
Architecture in Helsinki. Moderator will be Riksutställningar’s Tomas Carlsson,
who has been active in the environmental movement and is especially interested
in how nature is portrayed in exhibitions.
Full program (PDF):
24 November - 23 December, 2012
The Nature Art Boost
Build up your immunity against anxiety, isolation and negativity. Give yourself
a creative boost during these challenging times. Receive daily inspiration to
paint and draw with nature, close to home, on your own schedule then share with
our members-only online community. Time required is 15-30 minutes per day
(really!). Cost $57.
Visit the Creative by Nature online community to learn more and register at:
I look forward to
creating together with you.
Creative Nature Connection Network
Read my blog at
New Book- Beauty Muse: Painting in Communion with Nature-
November 16-17, 2012
Autumn Symposium “Art and Science – Hybrid Art and Interdisciplinary
Hosting institutions: Estonian Academy of Arts, Estonian Academy of Music and
Theatre, Graduate School of Culture Studies and Arts. The autumn symposium "Art
and Science - Hybrid Art and Interdisciplinary Research" poses a question that
despite a tendency towards ‘mutual incomprehension’, there are aspects of art
and science which overlap and intertwine. The interrelation between music, art,
natural and computer sciences can be seen in new media art, biotechnological or
telecommunication art and other contemporary artistic practices that have an
It is a second event in the process that will culminate in a conference and
exhibition in 2014 under the same title. Our goal in the context of this inter-
and transdisciplinary exhibition and conference in 2014 is to form a synergetic
cooperation of art and science.
10.00 – 18.00 Lectures and presentations of the key note speakers (open to the
20.00 – concert "Bird, Whale, Bug: Music from Nature" – David Rothenberg
(open to the public, chamber hall A-405 of the Estonian Academy of Music and
Theatre, Rävala pst 16)
11.00 – 16.00 – group seminars and discussions led by the key note speakers (for
registered participants, EAA)
Benefits of participation: Doctoral and Master students who have actively
participated in the discussions on both days and give a short presentation on
the second day will be awarded 1 ECTS.
Registration (necessary for the second day only): Heili Sõrmus,
Deadline: 1 November 2012. The language of the symposium is English.
Participation in the symposium is free of charge.
Marina Gržinić, professor of the Academy of Fine arts, Vienna, Institute of Fine
Arts, Post-Conceptual Art Practices. She is a researcher at the Institute of
Philosophy at the ZRC SAZU (Scientific ad Research Center of the Slovenian
Academy of Science and Art) in Ljubljana. She also works as a freelance media
theorist, art critic and curator.
Alan N Shapiro, interdisciplinary thinker who studied science-technology at MIT
and philosophy-history-literature at Cornell University. He is the author of
“Star Trek: Technologies of Disappearance” (Berlin: AVINUS Verlag, 2004), a
leading work in science fiction studies and on the conception of futuristic
technoscience. He is the editor and translator of The Technological Herbarium by
Gianna Maria Gatti (Berlin: AVINUS Verlag, 2010), a major study of art and
technology. He is a practicing software developer. Alan has worked as a
consultant to many large companies in several European countries. He is working
on projects like “Computer Science 2.0”, “The Car of the Future”, “The Library
and Museum of the Future”, and robotics. At his website “Alan N. Shapiro,
Technologist and Futurist” (www.alan-shapiro.com), he has already published more
than 200 articles (by himself and others). He is recognised as one of the
leading experts on the philosophy and cultural theory of Jean Baudrillard. He is
currently starting a book project called “The Prisoner: Confinement and Freedom
in the Global Village”.
David Rothenberg, associate professor of philosophy, known as a writer,
philosopher, ecologist, and musician, speaking out for nature in all aspects of
his diverse work. He is both a respected authority on deep ecology, and a jazz
clarinetist known for his integration of world music with improvisation and
electronics. His 1993 book, “Hand`s End: Technology and the Limits of Nature”,
is about how tools have changed the meaning of nature through history, and how
we may direct technology in the future so we will be brought closer to the
environment, not farther away.
Xavière Masson, one of the Directors of Le Laboratoire, a hub of ArtScience Labs
in Paris. With a sister cultural center in The Laboratory @ Harvard, Le
Laboratoire develops experiments every year, led by a major artist or designer,
working with one or more leading scientists, to develop works of art or design
in purely cultural, industrial, or humanitarian contexts – and sometimes in all
three. Experiments lead to three-month-long exhibitions at Le Laboratoire,
promoting exhibitions, product development or humanitarian intervention around
the world. Le Laboratoire’s products and exhibitions have been presented in
Paris and around the world, including the Cannes Film Festival and MoMA in New
Erich Berger, artist and cultural worker based in Helsinki/ Finland. His
interests lie in information processes and feedback structures, which he
investigates through installations, situations, performances and interfaces.
Currently he is a lecturer at the Fine Art Academy in Vienna/ Austria and the
director of the Finnish Bioart Society in Helsinki/ Finland
Erich Berger http://randomseed.org
October 12-14, 2012
TREE CLOUD: PLACE DANCING
Santa Fe, New Mexico,
a depth ecology movement & arts workshop
with David Abram and Taira Restar
Imagine an ensemble composed of azure sky, soaring ravens, jagged cliffs, the
sun dappled floor of an aspen grove, the poised silence of a desert hare.
Imagine yourself as an integral part of this ensemble, the life of this land and
your own life meeting, informing one another. Here, near the old adobe
settlement of Santa Fe, where forested slopes meet the high desert in the
foothills of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, the place is inviting you to dance!
How does the human animal sense and move within the more-than human terrain? In
this era of transformation, when so many are struggling to meet the earthly
changes now upon us, join cultural ecologist David Abram and movement artist
Taira Restar for an adventure into the felt space between the body and the
breathing land. We will open our creaturely senses, slipping into subtle and
dynamic movement, artistic play, and ensemble work with trees, rocks, sunlight,
wind, cricketrhythms, and cloud-shadows. Our explorations will include guided
movement, improvisational dance, earthly poetics, rich reflection, and solo time
with the other shapes that surround. How will the many-voiced intelligence of
this place speak to, and through, your person?
Friday evening October 12, Saturday & Sunday, October 13 - 14. Those with and
those without previous arts and dance experience welcome. Workshop costs are
$325/ $275 early registration by September 15. Includes art materials.
Accommodations self-organized. To register, contact Mountain’s LAP Studio:
or www.mountainslap.com. For other
David Abram, PhD, is a
cultural ecologist and geo-philosopher who lectures and teaches widely around
the world. He is the author of Becoming Animal: An Earthly Cosmology and The
Spell of the Sensuous: Perception and Language in a More-than-Human World.
www.wildethics.com Taira Restar, MA,
RSME, is a movement artist and body-based arts educator, who teaches and works
with groups internationally. She is on faculty at Tamalpa Institute. Taira is
passionate about exploring human beingness in and as nature. Taira will draw
upon her own Living Ensemble practice as well as the Tamalpa Life/Art Process®
ROCK TREE CLOUD: PLACE
DANCING is part of Everyplace Dances, a series of place-specific arts workshops
(www.tairarestar.com) and a project of Alliance for Wild Ethics
(www.wildethics.com). Photo of rock dance by Audicia Morley; Photos of rock
exploration and water-sun-rock ensemble by Taira Restar.
25 September, 2012 - 14 May, 2013
Course: Environmental Art Essentials
Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture
Students will learn the
history of Environmental Art, and how their own art practice fits into this
This course will review the history of environmental art, looking at examples of
artists and artworks, as well as critical art theory linked to this movement.
The origins of the Environmental Art movement will be examined, looking at
precursors to this movement and how the field has developed and changed. This
course will begin with a lecture series, and will continue with the discussion
of practical issues related to students' own work. Students will create plans
for original artworks and realize new artworks throughout the year.
Environmental Art degree and exchange students, others also welcome.
Other information: firstname.lastname@example.org
1-2 September, 2012
Environmental Utterance (conference)
University College Falmouth inc. Dartington College of Arts, Falmouth,
Across disciplines academics and artists are researching and creating practices
that are highly contextual (determined by the environment in which they are
located), exploring ways of articulating specific environments, spaces or
places. This conference examines a specific problematic that attends the
dissemination of this work: how to engage with ’being there’ when ‘there’ is not
We understand environment (social, built, natural, technological) as that which
surrounds and informs us. Through our practice we influence our environment.
What we create is shaped by our surroundings. We exist in a relation of mutual
exchange; making ourselves other and incorporating that which is other in turn.
This conference offers a forum for academics and creative practitioners to come
together and engage with articulations of mutual formation: to discuss work as
Such work often relies
on direct, personal experience of a particular environment. Transfer and
abstraction, necessary for the communication of this work beyond the specifics
of this original environment, challenge the work. Negotiating publication or
conference environment, for example, necessitates reformulation of the work,
engendering changes in texture and experience, in adapting to alternative
structures. What do such alterations, translations or transformations, mean for
This conference aims to examine these questions on a very practical level. When
it comes to considering environment, what is the relationship between the
structures of dissemination and the environment our work seeks to convey? What
is the relationship between our academic environment and the work we (aim to)
produce? How do we utter our environment?
We invite poets and writers, artists, academics, social and environmental
scientists, performers and musicians, among others, to discuss ways of uttering
environment. We seek work that explores the phenomenological sense of speaking
with environment. We encourage the use of a diverse range of media as part of
this dialogue. Participants are invited to find new ways of expressing their
research and/or artistic practice in a conference setting that reflects upon
this process of adaptation as a process of practical enquiry.
Instead of presenting what they already know, participants are invited to
experiment with their ‘potential’ environment, using the space of the conference
as an opportunity to learn from and with each other. The structure of the
conference is specifically designed to support such an exchange. Over the course
of two days we seek to create a plastic community of practice. There will be
both indoor (seminar rooms, lecture theatres, studios) and outdoor (gardens,
orchard, parkland) spaces available to present your work. Your proposal will
have to comply with the health and safety norms of Tremough Campus. Please refer
to the health and safety before you start planning your
applications: 31st March 2012
6-10 August, 2012
Wildpainting at Wij Trädgårdar
Maximum of 15 participants - still places left!
Follow in the footsteps of Claude Monet and paint the amazing colors of the
flowers at the gardens of Wij Trädgardår, two hours by train north of
Teacher: Jan van Boeckel (languages English and Swedish)
The course fee is SEK
1.200 per adult, which includes all painting materials.
Link to Wij Trädgårdar
Download course flyer (PDF)
This course is a part of a program
37 Places – About creating your own space in the world
21-26 July, 2012
Wildpainting at Kandal
Maximum of 15 participants - still places left!
Immerse yourself this summer in the colors and forms of the magnificent nature
at Kandal, near Sandane. In this course, we try to approach this landscape
through art-making, in surprising and uncommon ways, as if we see it for the
very first time!
Fee at NOK 3.500 per adult, which includes room and food on the farm for the
duration of the course, and all painting materials are included. Fee for
participants who arrange their own accommodation: NOK 2.500.
To register, please send your name, address and e-mail address to
Teacher: Jan van Boeckel (languages English and Swedish)
For information: Astrid Kallhovd (Vesla), our local host, phone: +47 98109669.
Download course flyer (PDF)
27-30 June, 2012
Berlin study trip
Focus on schoolyards,
parks and pocket parks, public spaces (meeting places), small sports arenas,
artists outdoor projects in parks and schools, adventure playgrounds and city
farms. Grün Macht Schule has 30 new projects in Berlin each year!
1) landscape architects, 2) architects, 3) school leaders, 4) kindergarden
leaders, 5) town planners, 6) artists interested in working with children and
youth, 7) park- and outdoor-planners in the municipalities, 8) sports- and
athletic consultants in the communities, 9) actual people in the government and
departments, 10) childhood researchers.
Participation fee for four days program - NOK 6000.
In addition come: external travelling T/R Berlin and accommodation.
Adventure Playgrounds and City Farms in Berlin:
Glimpses from the
Berlin Studytrip June 2010:
For more information,
contact Frode Svane, e-mail: frode.svane(at)gmail.com
19-21 June, 2012
home and the world: a creative
summit for artists and other thinkers
Dartington, United Kingdom
Many writers have
suggested that our increasing alienation from the natural world has had a
profound effect on the human condition and the psyche. Ecophilosopher Paul
Shephard suggests that human societies have always persisted in destroying their
habitat –– but that now this is compounded by our apparent loss of knowledge
about the interdependence of all living things.
This summit explores
existential questions such as: what does it mean to be at home in the world?
what does home mean to us? how can we be more aware of our ‘inhabited place’ in
the world? why do we all too often fail to understand the impact we have on the
world around us? It’s been more than fifteen years since Gablik suggested that
art can re-enchant our connection to the world – how have we responded?
Submissions and proposals are invited from artists and thinkers working within
any discipline or from any background. We are seeking a broad mix of challenging
ideas and submissions for this three-day summit, looking at the world and how we
live in it; how we find our place – our home – and how we use creativity and the
arts to ask questions, present problems, and offer up solutions, homages, and
While formal paper presentations will be accepted, submissions which feature
innovative, participatory, performative and/or interactive formats will be
favoured. Most sessions will be streamed live to the internet with live links to
chat, Facebook and Twitter, and this is something you might choose to build into
your proposal. Presentations are limited to thirty minutes with a maximum of
twenty minutes for presenting. There will be a limited number of breakout
sessions, with the most inventive and challenging proposals grouped into
90-minute sessions. The conference language is English.
Proceedings will be published subsequent, rather than prior to the event so that
it can reflect the mood of the conference, and include post-conference
contributions. Presenters who wish to extemporise, rather than reading a paper,
are encouraged. We will attempt to reflect the nature of all ‘live’ sessions in
The summit takes place on the beautiful and historic Dartington Hall Estate in
south Devon in southwest England [here], from June 19-21, 2012. The Home & The
World is hosted by Aune Head Arts and The Arts at Dartington and is affiliated
with the ‘Artful Ecologies’ series of conferences organised by RANE at
University College Falmouth. Other supporting partners include CIWEM and CCANW.
Find out more about the Organising Committee.
Call for Proposals; download/view the
print flyer (pdf).
25-26 May, 2012
University of Derby, United Kingdom
Confirmed Keynote Speakers:
• Kathleen Stewart, University of Texas Austin, author of Ordinary Affects
(2007) and A Space on the Side of the Road (1996) and
• Ben Highmore, University of Sussex, author of Ordinary Lives. Studies in the
Everyday (2011) and Everyday Life and Cultural Theory (2002)
This conference seeks exciting disciplinary and transdisciplinary proposals from
scholars working in fields such as cultural studies, literary studies, cultural
politics/history, creative writing, film and media studies, Area Studies,
photography, fine art, interested in examining the different ways in which human
beings respond and relate to, as well as debate and interact with landscape.
In 2009, the one-day symposium ‘Land and Identity’, held at the University of
Derby, brought together a diverse body of academics to discuss themes and
intersections across multiple areas of research interest. This follow-up event,
hosted by the Identity, Conflict and Representation Research Centre at the
University of Derby in collaboration with the Centre for Studies in Literature
at the University of Portsmouth, aims to develop inter-disciplinary debates
around the idea of ‘Affective Landscapes’. The conference has been inspired by
the work of theorists whose work examines points of intersection between
ordinary life and extraordinary encounters and exchanges with the world around
us. It asks how do we ‘feel’, ‘sense’, ‘know’, ‘cherish’, ‘memorise’, ‘imagine’,
‘dream’, ‘desire’, or even ‘fear’ landscapes? How do its ‘intensities’ register,
flow and circulate? What forms do we use to articulate, debate and record these
The Conference will include a related film screening and panel discussion to
take place at the QUAD Arts Centre in Derby.
We are particularly interested in proposals examining the following:
psychogeography, critical regionalism, cultural politics on identity and landscape, national identity, suburbia, edgelands, the rural/urban, responses to landscape by creative practitioners (writers/photographers/artists/filmmaker, phenomenology, the body in landscape, Ecocriticism, landscapes of trauma and memory, theories of affect and landscape.
Further details about the conference, the venue, travel, accommodation,
registration etc can be found at the website:
14-25 May, 2012
Soul in Nature: Experiencing the Connection
Schumacher College, Dartington, United Kingdom
Teachers: Princess Irene van Lippe Biesterfeld, Satish Kumar, Jonathan Horwitz,
Course facilitator: Jan van Boeckel.
Humans are part of nature, but few people in modern society really feel this
connection – with the result that the natural world is exploited and abused in
ways that would seem incomprehensible to indigenous people who see the earth as
their life-giver or mother. Many in the environmental movement believe that the
outer challenges of sustainability can only be effectively addressed if we
understand and experience our interdependence with the myriad life forms we
share this planet with. Sustainability can only be truly sustainable, when we
feel and experience nature as our partner.
This course provides an opportunity to connect deeply with the natural world
using a variety of traditional and transformational practices.
Week 1: May 14 – 18
Inter-being, an all encompassing worldview – Princess Irene van Lippe
Biesterfeld and Satish Kumar
During this week, you will work with guided meditations, walks and other
exercises in nature which will help you open your heart and senses to
interspecies communication. You will walk on your own with an exercise on the
subject of the day, and reflect with others on their experiences. Each day will
focus on a different realm – stone, plant, animal and human – and what we can
learn by getting to know these elements and beings intimately. One day will be
spent on the stunning and tranquil surrounds of nearby Dartmoor, experiencing
its open moorland and granite tors.
The exact nature of the exercises and meditations will emerge from the
interactions with nature and each other. The main object is to help you
re-)connect on a deep level with nature and to revalue on a personal level your
place in the global ecosystem – Earth.
Irene van Lippe-Biesterfeld, Princess of the Netherlands, has spent her
life working as a social educator in Europe, South Africa and the US. For over
24 years she has facilitated transformational processes, working with groups and
individuals. This goal now encompasses the vision that all of creation has a
right to its own personal space and power. In 2001 she founded the
Lippe-Biesterfeld NatureCollege which runs educational and training programmes
designed to revive the relationship between humans and nature at all levels of
awareness. She has written several books on this subject: ‘Dialogue with Nature’
(1995) was a bestseller in the Netherlands and was translated into five
languages, and her latest book is ‘Science, Soul and the Spirit of Nature’. In
2000, she founded the Bergplaas Nature Reserve, a 7000-hectare area of
wilderness which hosts retreats, training courses and healing.
When he was only nine years old, Satish renounced the world and joined the
wandering brotherhood of Jain monks. Dissuaded from his path by an inner voice
at the age of 18, he left the monastic order and became a campaigner for land
reform, and has been working to turn Gandhi’s vision of a peaceful world into
reality ever since. He undertook an 8,000 mile peace pilgrimage, walking from
India to America without any money to deliver packets of peace tea to leaders of
the four nuclear powers. In 1973, he settled in England, becoming editor of
Resurgence magazine – a position he has held ever since. Satish is the guiding
spirit behind a number of ecological, spiritual and educational ventures in
Britain and was one of the founders of Schumacher College.
Week 2: May 21 – 25
Shamanism, Science and Soul – Jonathan Horwitz and Stephan Harding
The shaman was the first scientist, but unlike many of today’s scientists,
shamans engage with both the physical and non-physical aspects of the world they
live in. Many important medicines have been discovered by indigenous shamans,
where the initial knowledge about a plant’s use came not from scientific
analysis, but from a shamanic communication with the plant itself. Hard science
studies that which can be measured. Social science accepts that which can be
observed. To this the shaman adds that which can be experienced. What they all
have in common is that they are interested in finding out more about the planet
we live on, and how its inhabitants connect and interact.
During this week, participants will be introduced by Jonathan to some basic
shamanic techniques that enable them to directly contact different layers and
forms of Nature. Working both inside and out of doors with traditional shamanic
practices, participants will learn how to shift their consciousness so they are
able to see different aspects of the web of life. The foundation of shamanic
practice is animism, and this course will give participants access to the soul
and spirit in all living things, to discover another type of knowledge and
encourage a more holistic science.
To complement the shamanic work, Stephan will show how scientists today have
come to see the Earth as a living, animate being. Together, Jonathan and Stephan
will weave these two strands into a journey to the soul of Nature.
Jonathan Horwitz has studied and worked with shamanism since 1972. For
eight years he was on the staff of The Foundation for Shamanic Studies, USA.
Jonathan has an M.A. in anthropology, and is a shamanic counselor (HMSC). He has
taught courses since 1986. He runs the Scandinavian Center for Shamanic Studies,
whose activities include practising, teaching, and research into shamanism, as
well as shamanic grassroot networking.
This course is for anyone who feels touched by the environmental, ecological,
spiritual and economic questions facing us today. The aim is that people will
leave knowing how to communicate directly with Nature, feel able to receive its
power and knowledge, and look deeper into the interdependence of ecological and
Stephan Harding is Programme Coordinator of the MSc in Holistic Science
and resident Ecologist at Schumacher College teaching on the MSc core modules
and as part of several of the short courses at the College. He is a close
associate of James Lovelock and an expert in the study of Gaia theory and deep
ecology. He is the author of Animate Earth and Grow Small, Think Beautiful:
Ideas for a Sustainable World from Schumacher College.
1-22 May, 2012
Permaculture Design Course
Island of Statia, Caribbean
Aardwerk is preparing an international PDC course for 2012. The course will be
in English and lasts three weeks from 1 May through 21 May 2012 (22 days
including arrival and departure days).
We’ve found a great location that will graphically demonstrate the issues of
small scale community development and dealing with global changes in climate,
economy and ecology. Its remoteness will enable participants to see their own
environment through new and refreshed eyes. We’ve also attracted a great team of
teachers and support staff with international experience and local knowledge.
The course will cover the standard permaculture curriculum using creative
teaching methods and lots of practical field work. Graduates will receive the
internationally recognised PDC certificate, your passport to advanced
permaculture education, networking and your entry into professional permaculture
teaching and design work.
20-22 April, 2012
Creation, Creatureliness, and Creativity: The Human Place in the Natural
Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, USA
THE SOCIETY FOR
CONTINENTAL PHILOSOPHY AND THEOLOGY
Bruce Foltz (Eckerd College)
Janet Martin Soskice (Cambridge University)
Norman Wirzba (Duke Divinity School)
SCPT's 2012 conference takes today’s ecological crises as its point of
departure. We invite theological and philosophical contributions informed by
continental traditions such as phenomenology, hermeneutics, eco-feminism,
post-structuralism, post-colonial studies, deconstruction, and social and deep
ecology that help us understand and implement a sustainable future together.
Authors may submit papers that address ecological issues head on, as well as
those that tackle philosophical and theological themes that underlie these
The Society for Continental Philosophy and Theology seeks to promote inquiry at
the intersection of philosophy and theology. For more information about SCPT,
19-21 March, 2012
ART * EROS * EDUCATION - 4th
Aalto TaiK, Helsinki, Finland
ART * EROS * EDUCATION is the title of the 4th symposium. The words are not separated with any ordinary
sign, commas, plusses, or dashes, but a star in order to avoid a premeditated
hierarchy, coincidence, sequence or any order between them. The focus is on the
dialogical influence between contemporary art and art‐related educational
efforts, like curating and mediating art, artification of everyday life,
community‐driven art projects, art‐based environmental education, art journalism
and political activism in the [dis]guise of art.
Like Plato’s Eros, the child god who was not rich, not beautiful, not
wanted but in want of all these, contemporary art is an incubation arena for all
kind of wants and wishes that aim at the change through sense‐based methods: we
are forced to see, hear, taste, smell and feel.
Ideas and exact explanations, manifests and programs come later, if ever, but
the immediate sensory affect already includes the complex context: to become a
dialogue, to prepare a platform for discourse, to change ways of making and
thinking. Contemporary art is a stance that works for future, activism and
In this symposium we propose a discussion on the cultural dialogue that takes
the reciprocity of art and education for an interesting and beneficial project
towards a future that includes intense responsibility for how the the cultural
carriers – people, institutions, texts, artefacts, ideas, images, media – are
empowered by today’s incentives.
As key note speakers, among others, will act:
Prof. Gary Peters from York’s St.John University, known for his book on the
philosophy of improvisation
Ms. Leslie Johnson, much loved and appreciated former head of Valand Art School
Ramunas Motiekaitis from the Theatre and Music Academy of Vilnius
Prof. Pia Lindman from The Finnish Academy of Fine Arts, celebrated media artist
Ph.D. Senior lecturer Max Ryynänen from Aalto University, known for his interest
in popular visual culture
Open call ”scientific
posters” wanted! In the lobby of the venue the selected posters will be on
The posters must follow the theme and the spirit of the symposium.
8-26 March, 2012
Course An Ecology of Mind: Gregory Bateson and the Arts
Aalto University, Department of Art, School of Art and
Design, Helsinki, Finland
Master student level,
max 25 students, minimum 8; open to all students of Aalto Schools.
5 ECTS. Students need good to excellent skills in English language. Mondays
(14-16 pm, Thursdays and Fridays (10-12 am). Teacher: Jan van Boeckel
Bateson's influence is wide (e.g. on Guattari/Deleuze and Lakoff/Johnson). The
students will receive a comprehensive introduction to both primary and secondary
literature (and film) on Bateson. Specific to this course is a focus on
Bateson's view of aesthetics and its relevance to visual studies and art
education. Bateson's work was profoundly interdisciplinary and is of relevance
to many different fields. At present his work has not been dealt with in a
systematic way in any of the courses that i am aware of. The course would be a
meeting place of students interested in ecology, philosophy, aesthetics, as well
as systems thinking and epistemology.
"What pattern connects the crab
to the lobster and the orchid to the primrose and all the four of them to
me? And me to you?"
- Gregory Bateson
from Mind and Nature
As preparation to the sessions, participants read the assigned literature from
the following books: Gregory Bateson: Steps to an Ecology of Mind, 2000 (ca. 50
pages) Gregory Bateson: Mind and Nature, 2002 (ca. 50 pages) Peter
Harries-Jones: A Recursive Vision: Ecological Understanding and Gregory Bateson,
1995 (ca. 50 pages) Optional additional literature: Gregory Bateson and Mary
Catherine Bateson: Angels Fear: Towards an Epistemology of the Sacred, 1987
David Lipset: Gregory Bateson: The Legacy of a Scientist, 1982.
The students will acquire basic and key knowledge of the seminal work of
philosopher-biologist-anthropologist Gregory Bateson, and his importance for
understanding questions pertaining to humans' and ecology/nature/biology. The
skills the students develop or deepen are studying a range of literature
sources, partaking in group discussions and making a group presentation and
presenting a well-articulated academic essay in English.
More information: e-mail: jan.vanboeckel(at)aalto.fi
29 February, 2012
Earth Education: Art Education as if the Environment Matters
Location in New York City: Education Center at the Rubin Museum of Art
Wednesday, February 29,
2012, 1-6 pm
The purpose of this meeting is to create a gathering of like minded artists,
educators, and environmental activists from across the globe, interested in how
art education can help us focus on the leading issue of our times: the Earth’s
natural environment and how we can live on the Earth sustainably. This
pre-conference is structured to allow us to meet each other face to face and to
share our work and our practices, and to discuss the possibilities of creating
an ongoing formal organization to promote the work of environmental balance and
protection through art education.
Location: Education Center at the Rubin Museum of Art
132 W. 17 St. New York City, tel. 212-620-5000,
Room: Raymond G.
Chambers Family Seminar Room
1:15 Peter London (Keynote Talk)
Virginia Freyermuth, Rhode Island College, Providence RI
Richard Mills, Professor of Art, Long Island University, New York, and
Director, Hackensack River (Restoration) Project
Jane Kunzman, Holistic art educator, Chair, Visual Art Department,
Gill St. Bernard’s School, Gladstone NJ
Ruth Beer, PI on a SSHRC Creation/Research Project "Catch and Release: Mapping
stories of geographic and cultural transition"
General audience participation/discussion
2:45 Refreshment break and Posters (poster presenters will not be attendance)
Amy Ruopp, art teacher, Midland MI public schools and Mae DeBruyn,
Science teacher, Midland MI public schools
Andrea Mathieson, Artist, Educator, Environmentalist, Owner/Director,
Raven Essences, Ontario. Canada
Dr. Heather Anderson, Artist, Educator, Environmentalist, author of Art and Eco
Awareness: A Teachers Guide to Art and the Natural Environment, Fresno, CA
Erica Hansen, Artist in Residence, The Creative Alliance, Baltimore, MD
Lisa Lipsett, Artist, Educator, Environmentalist, Author, Beauty Muse.
Salt Spring Island, British Columbia, Canada
3:15 Programs and Practicalities:
Florida State University: Tom Anderson, Anniina Suominen Guyas, Kristie Moore,
University of British Columbia: Rita Irwin, Valerie Triggs.
Aalto University Finland, Pirkko Pohjakallio, Jan van Boeckel.
5:00 Summary discussion and future plans.
6-7 Optional wine and cheese reception at the museum
This pre-conference is free of charge thanks to the generosity of the Rubin
Museum, but is limited to the first 35 participants who register. Please
register by sending an email of intent to Kristie Moore at
1-4 March, 2012
NAEA Convention: Emerging Perspectives - Connecting
Teaching, Learning, and Research
New York City, United States
National Art Education
Association.The 2012 National Convention
Theme: Emerging Perspectives - Connecting Teaching, Learning, and Research
Two hour session on environmental education through the
An international panel
of researchers and teachers from the United States, Canada, and Finland connect
teaching, learning, and research centered on environmentally aware and
ecologically activist art education. The panelists are engaged in global
initiatives that aim to promote environmental education at all levels through
the arts. Participants include Pirkko Pohjakallio & Jan van Boeckel, Aalto
University, Finland; Rita Irwin and Valerie Triggs, University of British
Columbia, Canada; Tom Anderson and Anniina Suominen Guyas, Florida State
University; and Peter London, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.
In this session each panelist will discuss his/her research interests and the
practical applications of that research for programs and curricula related to
environmentally oriented art education. Programs and resources already in place
as well as projections for the future will be discussed. Time will be made for
audience discussion at the end of the session.
SPEAK OUT SESSION: Environmentally Aware and
Ecologically Activist Art Education
DAY: Friday, March 2
LOCATION: Sheraton Metropolitan Ballroom West 2nd Floor
From the NAEA website:
Speak Out Session | Panel Discussion hosted by TOM ANDERSON and PETER LONDON
Environmentally Aware and Ecologically Activist Art Education
An international panel of researchers and teachers from the United States,
Canada, and Finland connect teaching, learning, and research centered on
environmentally aware and ecologically activist art education. The panelists are
engaged in global initiatives that aim to promote environmental education at all
levels through the arts.
No ticket required.
25 February, 2012
SURVIVAL OF THE BEAUTIFUL: Scientists and Artists Face
Off on the Aesthetics of Evolution
New York, NY, United States
An All-Day Wonder
Cabinet Guest-Curated by David Rothenberg, presented by The New York Institute
of the Humanities and The New Jersey Institute of Technology
Saturday Feb. 25th, 2012, 10:45 am till 9:30 pm
NYU's Cantor Film Center, 36 East 8th Street, New York, NY
Free and Open to the Public
Why did the peacock’s tail so trouble Charles Darwin? Natural selection could
not explain it, so he had to contrive a whole new theory of sexual selection,
which posited that certain astonishingly beautiful traits became preferred even
when not exactly useful, simply because they appealed to the opposite sex, and
specifically so in each case. And yet the parallels in what gets preferred at
different levels of life suggest that nature may in fact favor certain kinds of
patterns over others. Visually, the symmetrical; colorwise, the contrasting and
gaudy; displaywise, the gallant and extreme. Soundwise, the strong contrast
between low note and high, between fast rhythm and the long clear tone. For that
matter, plenty of beauty in nature would seem to arise for reasons other than
mere sexual selection: for example, the mysterious inscriptions on the backs of
seashells, or the compounding geometric symmetries of microscopic diatoms, or
the live patterns pulsating across the bodies of octopus and squid.
such things and find them astonishingly beautiful: are we wrong to
experience Nature in such terms? Far greater than our grandest edifices and
epic tales, Nature itself nevertheless seems entirely without purposeful
self-consciousness or self-awareness. Meanwhile, though we ourselves are as
nothing compared to it, we still seem possessed of a parallel need to
create. So: can we in fact create our way into better understanding of the
role of beauty in the vast natural world? David Rothenberg recently
published a book on these themes, Survival of the Beautiful (Bloomsbury,
www.survivalofthebeautiful.com), and many of the protagonists he
encountered on his quest will join him on stage at the Cantor Film Center to
debate the question of whether nature’s beauty is actual, imaginary, useful,
excessive, or perhaps even entirely beside the point.
Featured presenters at
this all-day Wonder Cabinet will include:
10:45 am - DAVID ROTHENBERG and JARON LANIER offer a musical and conceptual
11:00 am - GAIL PATRICELLI on building a fembot bowerbird so as to study the way
male bowerbirds woo females through elaborate dancing and decorating rituals;
drawing on her example, RICHARD PRUM explains why everyone misses the point of
sexual selection except him.
12:00 pm - OFER TCHERNICHOVSKI responds to Prum’s claim by way introducing
a postdoc in his lab, who, veritably haunted by the beauty of the nightingale’s
nevertheless tries to subject it to scientific analysis.
12:45 pm - ANNA LINDEMANN, Prum alum turned performance artist, enacts her
Theory of Flight.
2:00 pm - PHILIP BALL shows how chemistry and physics might trump biology in
their ability to account for formal natural beauty. TYLER VOLK deploys his
concept of metapatterns to explain how 3 realms and
13 steps (from quarks to culture) make us who we are.
3:00 pm - We know how Science is regularly said to influence Art, but SUZANNE
ANKER explores the flow in the other direction. DAVID SOLDIER and VITALY KOMAR
revisit their classic elephant art experiment, asking whether we can learn
anything about art by teaching animals to make it.
4:00 pm - Composer DAVID DUNN details his proposal to use music to save the
forests of the American West from destruction by pine bark beetles. DAVID ABRAM
on how synaesthesia (the blending of the senses) might help us feel our way into
the experience of another animal.
5:30 pm - Digital artist SCOTT SNIBBE recounts how he helped turn BJÖRK’s love
of science into the Biophilia app.
6:15 pm- BABA BRINKMAN, direct from off-Broadway, performs a special version of
The Rap Guide to Evolution.
7:00 pm - JARON LANIER explains why if squid only had childhoods, they would
rule the world.
LAURIE ANDERSON evokes some of her journeys along the borderlands of nature and
Closing music by David Rothenberg and Jaron Lanier.
Call for applications: Ars Bioarctica art & science
residency in 2012
Ars Bioarctica is long term art&science program by the Finnish Society of Bioart
together with the Kilpisjärvi Biological Station.
Since 2010 it is organizing an artist-in-residency program at the Kilpisjärvi
Biological Station of the University of Helsinki in the sub-Arctic Lapland. The
emphasis of the residency is the Arctic environment and art& science
collaboration and is is open for artists and art&science research teams.
The residency takes place in the facilities of the Kilpisjärvi
Biological Station. It provides the residents with a combined living and working
environment, a basic laboratory, internet connection and sauna.
The Kilpisjärvi Biological Station offers to the visiting artists the same
possibilities and infrastructure as its scientists and staff. This includes
access to all scientific equipment, laboratory facilities, the library and
seminar room as well as the usage of field equipment. A dedicated contact person
in Kilpisjärvi will
familiarize residents with the local environment and customs.
The basic costs of a residency period which have to be covered by the applicant
include: travel to Finland,
travel within Finland to Kilpisjärvi, and accommodation and provisions at the Station.
Applications have to include the desired residency duration, a work proposal, a
working plan with time schedule, the desired residency outcome, a list of
necessities for the work to be carried out and the artist's CV.
The application deadline is 31st of January 2012.
The evaluation of the applications emphasizes the quality of the proposal, its
interaction of art&science, its artistic and or scientific significance, the
projects relation to the thematic focus of Ars Bioarctica, and its feasibility
to be carried out at the Kilpisjärvi Biological Station in the given time.
For applications or questions please contact Erich Berger: