In developing my ecoart practice, I found few in the arts who are teaching art and ecology courses. The few tutors who had in-depth practical knowledge were overseas – and only a handful of art and ecology programmes exist in the world!
Given the gravity of the unprecedented ecological emergency for the survival of our species – will mean this will change – IT HAS TO!! But poorly-funded art colleges (and struggling more now with the pandemic) will be slow to provide new ecoliteracy curricula for the arts.
The art and ecology field suffers accordingly, with art educators, students and cultural policymakers viewing it as a marginal activity in contemporary art. Thus, important cultural responses in this area are little recognised and poorly funded.
'The sustainability concept which is based on the three-pillar paradigm: economic, environmental and social lacks the vital fourth cultural pillar.
Culture must be a pillar in its own right, in an equal relation with other three dimensions of sustainability for its contribution to the creation of collective narratives, its ability to heal and consolidate communities, and foster diversity.
With the world faced with the COVID-19 pandemic today and the need to rebuild our societies tomorrow, culture should be at the heart of the response.'
Culture Action Europe CAE - Europe Day 9 May 2020.
The Haumea Online Essential Ecoliteracy course is my contribution to the international #CultureDeclares movement.
I try to embody the #CultureDeclares values in my course, as well as those in the Stop Ecocide campaign and the Earth Charter, to which I am also a signatory.
The Values of #CultureDeclares are as follows:
"Co-creating a regenerative culture – one that is inclusive, healthy, life-supporting, resilient and adaptable – requires rebuilding just and ethical relationships between ourselves, and with other species and the land. This takes time.
Regenerative culture includes:
- Teaching and implementing the changes we want to see in society
- Challenging power and privilege
- Supporting each other in tending to grief as we face the truth about this emergency
- Building a culture of care into our daily lives – care for ourselves, others and the Earth
- Changing the paradigm by which we design, grow, make and trade so the living planet can be regenerated."
The Haumea Online Ecoliteracy course provides learning for a life-sustaining culture; it makes ecological knowledge and resources much accessible, and it directly speaks to building a culture of care for ourselves, others, and the Earth and its inhabitants.