“The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction.” – Rachel Carson
We live indoors, many of us. While perhaps we move about between buildings or spend some of our leisure time outdoors, the vast majority of Western society is bound to a life that keeps them between walls. How, then, are we to appreciate and understand our connection to the planet that sustains us? How are we to see the irreplaceable wonder of nature and appreciate our small role in this enormous earth family that binds every living thing on the globe? If we are to save the ground beneath our feet, the oceans that nourish this lumbering rock on which we sit, we must first get to know what sits beyond our doorstep.
Claudio Zulian spoke to us from the north of Spain where he was working on an exhibition. The work he was relates to work he has produced in other parts of Europe as well as the U.S. and examines the experiences and memories of people in a particular area or neighborhood. Zulian speaks to inhabitants of the neighborhoods and identifies commonalities among them that begin to shape the work. He uses installation as well as voices, images, music and sounds. To hear more about this work, including the particular piece he was at work on when we spoke, listen to the complete interview.
Beth Stephens & Annie Sprinkle joined us to speak of their past work and their new book, Assuming the Ecosexual Position-the Earth as Lover. We also discussed their recent Guggenheim Fellowship win, which will support an upcoming documentary film that investigates fire – how it fits into cultures, how wildfires affect human life and more. Stephens and Sprinkle themselves fled wildfire in California at the same time as the incendiary protests over the killing of George Floyd, which, in part, gave rise to the idea for the upcoming film. To hear more about this as well as past work, listen to the complete interview.
A Few Words to Keep in your Pocket:
Introduce yourself to the planet, only then will saving it become personal.
Interviews are available on iTunes as podcasts, and for Android please click here. All weekly essay pieces in a shareable format are here. The full archive of interviews is here.
Books to Read
What are you reading? Add your titles to our reading list here. To learn more about Assuming the Ecosexual Position-the Earth as Lover by Beth Stephens and Annie Sprinkle, as well as their other books, click here.
Begehungen Festival 2022 invites artists to apply for residency of up to four weeks. The theme this year – at the new location of the festival at a disused water park – is PLANSCH. Selected artists receive an allowance and materials cost, free accommodation and reimbursed travel expenses. For more information, and to submit your work, visit the website. Deadline is March 20.
Brainard Carey is an author, artist and educator. He is the director of Praxis Center for Aesthetics. He has written six books for artists and the most recent (2021) is Making it in the Art World.