Creative Women Leading Climate Action
By Burns Maxey | Friday, September 18, 2020
Friday, September 18, 2020
The UMass Amherst Arts Extension Service and partners host the Creative Women Leading Climate Action (CWLCA), a virtual symposium and event series highlighting artists and arts professionals creatively responding to climate change.
The CWLCA symposium offers a series of free virtual events from September 30 through October 15, including a mixture of public offerings that are open to all and registration-required symposium events that are open to women and nonbinary people to create a safe space in which to share. Pre-registration is required for the symposium that includes events, workshops, and panel discussions. Zoom links will be provided upon registration. Full information and registration details may be located here: umass.edu/aes/cwlca.
Creative Women Leading Climate Action symposium envisions building an intergenerational network with a shared goal of creative climate action. This series of remote events highlights the work that artists and arts professionals are doing to respond to climate change and provides opportunities for students to learn from arts leaders and forge their own network as they pursue leadership in arts and activism fields. Dee Boyle-Clapp, Director of the Arts Extension Service said, "We welcome this opportunity to focus on the most important issue of our time and to provide a means for students and the general public to come together to experience new works created specifically for this event, as well as opportunities to learn, share, and discover ways to get involved from those who are on the front lines of creating change."
Partnerships across the UMass campus including faculty, staff, and students, have joined together to present the CWLCA to engage people in dialogues about climate action. Terre Parker, Program Coordinator of Arts Extension Service and organizer of the CWLCA symposium said, "I am so excited to share the work of all of the artists highlighted in Creative Women Leading Climate Action. These women and nonbinary people are leading their communities through extraordinarily difficult times. Their work offers respite, connection, and hope."
Lauren Bouvier, Arts Entrepreneurship Initiative Intern and UMass Amherst student studying psychology and event planning, is part of the organizing team for the virtual symposium. She explains, "Students will have the opportunity to learn how to evolve to be leaders in climate change activism, even if remote, with a supportive collective empowering each individual."
CWLCA Public Events
All public events are free and open to all.
The series begins with Robin Wall Kimmerer who will give a talk on Wednesday, September. 30 at 6 p.m. Kimmerer, a scientist and author of the bestselling book Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants. Drawing upon both scientific and Indigenous knowledges, this talk will explore how we might use the gifts and the responsibilities of human people in support of mutual thriving in a time of ecological crisis. The keynote lecture is co-presented by Arts Extension Service, the Creative Women Leading Climate Action Symposium, 2020-2021 History Department Feinberg Series "Planet on a Precipice," and partners. The talk will be presented live and recorded via Zoom, YouTube, and Facebook.
On Friday, October 2 at 4 p.m. (ET). The Augusta Savage Gallery will present the YouTube premiere of REVIVAL/50, dance artist Terre Parker’s site-specific performance, For Her, created in collaboration with Barbara Cortez-Greig, Liz O’Brien, and Elizabeth Pangburn. The video may be viewed Friday, October 2 through Thursday, October 8 in the Augusta Savage Gallery virtual gallery. www.fineartscenter.com/TerreParker
CWLCA Symposium Events (registration required)
Free and open to women and nonbinary people.
Thursday, October 1, 12 - 1:30 p.m. (ET)
CWLCA Story Circle - A workshop facilitated by JuPong Lin, Program Director and MFA in interdisciplinary arts at Goddard College. Movements for social justice, climate action, and climate justice rely on the rich, oral story-sharing traditions in virtually every culture of the world. Drawing on those practices, we will host a story circle to give every participant an opportunity to speak your story of how you came to be the artist and leader you are today. What are your dreams for future generations? What gifts do you bring as an artist/professional/leader?
Thursday, October 8, 10 a.m. - 12:15 p.m. (ET) and Thursday, October 15, 1 - 3:15 p.m. (ET)
New Fables for a New World - A workshop facilitated by Dr. Terry Jenoure, Interdisciplinary Artist. Fables teach lessons, offer wisdom, encourage compassion, and suggest a needed change. Through guided experimentation with sound, words, and found objects, this workshop turns concerns for the environment into performative arts activism. Engaging in a wide range of art experiments and drawing on both scientific knowledge and personal stories we will build new and original fables that encourage novel grass-roots solutions to our climate-related emergencies. This workshop intensive is designed for artists and non-artists. Workshop participants will share a brief presentation with CWLCA attendees at the end of the workshop.
Thursday, October 8, 12 - 1:30 p.m. (ET)
Creative Climate: Inspiration and Activation - A panel moderated by Dee Boyle-Clapp, Director, Arts Extension Service, UMass Amherst.
Panelists include Emmalie Dropkin, Extinction Rebellion; Anais Reyes, Climate Museum, Exhibitions Associate; and Raquel de Anda, curator and cultural organizer, and Arts Production Coordinator, People’s Climate March, NYC.
Climate change is upon us, and we have limited time to act. There are many arts organizations leading the fight locally, nationally, and internationally. This panel of artists/arts managers will share the work that their organizations are engaging in, from awareness campaigns to direct actions demanding substantive change in policy and practices on campus and beyond. Panelists will share how they balance optimism with realism in the face of dire climate news, and action steps that we can all take individually and collectively, even during the pandemic, to make a difference for the planet, and move from fear and surrender to action.
Thursday, October 15, 3 - 4:30 p.m. (ET)
Climate Change and Communities of Color: How Artists are Responding - A panel moderated by Hind Mari, Director, Women of Color Leadership Network, UMass Amherst. Panelists include Dr. Diana Alvarez, Artist Scholar; Naya (Chelvanya) Gabriel, Artist; and Erika Slocumb, Artist.
The United States was built on the foundation of colonialism, capitalism, and slavery by extracting human and natural resources from indigenous and enslaved peoples, destroying their ways of life, and a previously balanced relationship with the environment. Racial injustice is intrinsically tied to climate change as a result of this history. The latest manifestations of this relationship can be seen through the disproportionate impacts of COVID-19, climate change, and police brutality on BIPOC, among other issues.
Artists of color have been imperative to the climate and racial justice movement through their various media. This panel includes three amazing artists who will talk about their art and the important work they are doing.
Creative Women Leading Climate Action is presented by the UMass Arts Extension Service, Augusta Savage Gallery, Women of Color Leadership Network, College of Humanities and Fine Arts Advising and Career Center, Department of History Feinberg Family Distinguished Lecture Series, Department of Theater, and UMass Amherst Center at Springfield. CWLCA is made possible by support from Women for UMass Amherst, UMass Sustainability Innovation and Engagement Fund, Massachusetts Cultural Council, and the Arts Extension Service’s Arts Entrepreneurship Initiative.
The keynote event is co-sponsored by the Feinberg Family Distinguished Lecture Series, made possible thanks to the generosity of UMass Amherst history department alumnus Kenneth R. Feinberg ’67 and associates. The Feinberg Series is co-sponsored by the Five College Native American and Indigenous Studies, CMASS, and more than three dozen community and university and partners.
For complete information about Creative Women Leading Climate Action, learn more at umass.edu/aes/cwlca.