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Local Art-Based Climate Symposium Draws a Crowd

On January 20th the Environmental Humanities Program, led by Second Year Brooke Larson, in conjunction with Wasatch Rising Tide and several other non-profit and community organizations hosted an engaging and participatory climate event entitled “ARTvisim: Mobilizing the Climate Movement.” Held at the Utah Department of Art and Art History, the event drew over one hundred people ranging from local high schoolers to local climate justice activists and art school graduate students.

The purpose of ARTivism was to explore the role of art in activism and social movements and to work together to create meaningful climate art. The event began with a panel discussion featuring artists, dancers and writers whose work engages with the climate movement. An art build led by North American Arts Organizer for 350.org, David Solnit, and Spiritual Ecology Fellow, Ryan Camero, followed the panel and allowed participants to contribute to the painting of a powerful banner that read “Defend Our Future! Sacrifice No More!” and beautifully designed patches to be used in the local climate justice movement going forward.

A storytelling work shop and Beehive Design Collective presentation rounded out a day of community building and art making. The Beehive Design collective presented a mix of oral storytelling and visual art as a way to engage the international climate movement and present a widely understood climate story, using art as a tool of communication that opens the conversation to a larger range of audiences and participants.

ARTivism was successful in bringing together people from across the city to build solidarity and encourage positive feelings and collective momentum. Lauren Wood, local climate justice organizer, led the group in a collective heartbeat created by participants pounding their hands against their chests and Ryan Camero finished off the event with a song circle. These collective acts of creation and expression are foundational a strong local climate movement and a productive and caring city-wide community.

View photos from the symposium. (Click to englarge)

Photo Credit: Brooke Larsen
Last Updated: 9/30/19