Season for Ex-Change Two
Tackling Climate Change Together
About this event
In this unique roundtable, we will meet the artists and producers of four commissions from Season for Change and the British Council: Walking Forest, The Dream (ing) Field Lab, Living-Language-Land, and Weaving Hopes. They are all currently working on cultural projects that are tackling climate change and climate justice in the UK and globally, with a specific focus on our relationship to land and nature, identity and language.
This discussion is chaired by Jenny White.
The British Council launched The Climate Connection to mark World Environment Day on 5 June. Taking place in the run up to the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26 ), The Climate Connection is a global programme that brings people around the world together to meet the challenges of climate change. It’s about sharing ideas, developing innovative climate solutions, and taking positive action together. We are delighted to introduce Living-Language-Land (UK, Colombia, India) as part of Creative Commissions, and Weaving Hopes for the Future, a UK-Malaysia partnership, both part of The Climate Connection.
Walking Forest looks back to the collective actions of the campaigners for women’s suffrage who stood for radical democratic change. Back then Suffragettes and Suffragists took a stand and marched through the streets in their thousands to get votes for women. They showed ordinary people can make extraordinary change. Where they campaigned to change how women were represented in legal and political systems, activists today work to change the way the natural world is represented in legal, political, economic and cultural systems. Walking Forest looks forward to the next 100 years when articulating and standing up together for the well-being of Earth is key to planetary survival.
dream(ing) field lab
Crucible, carnival, sanctuary, imaginarium. The dream(ing) field lab weaves together acts of rest, ritual, care, creation and celebration offering a space for women and femmes of the African diaspora to re-vision their relationship with land in the context of climate breakdown. Combining work with native plants, intersectional storytelling, theatricality and ancestral wisdom, the dream(ing) field lab will design and produce a field kit that supports self-reliance and well-being in the face of climate breakdown. We take a somatic approach to cultivating joy, incorporating movement and breathwork which honour the role our bodies have to play in our liberation. We nourish our bodies in order to dream our visions for the earth from a deeply-grounded place.
The innovative Living-Language-Land is a global conversation about the seeds of human survival in the face of devastating climate change and biodiversity loss. It will create a living lexicon – a word bank – drawn from minority and disappearing languages in relation to land and nature. Each word will unfold into written, video, audio and photographic stories that connect audiences to the specific land-language associations, as well as to the environmental challenges they face. Words will also evolve into creative actions people might take in their own lives, with the opportunity to contribute and discuss new ideas.
Weaving Hope is a collaboration between women weavers and Orang Asli youth from Malaysia to create a canvas to raise awareness about the indigenous plights in Malaysia in safeguarding important ecosystems for climate action/justice. Weaving Hope is rooted in four principles: education, activism, empowerment and creative art. The project will be documented via filming and writing to create the communication material to be presented to the public in an exhibition.
Jenny White was the Head of Visual Arts Programme at the British Council from 2016 to 2020, and set up ‘Greening the Arts’ a global forum for activating a cultural response to climate change at the intersection of climate and social justice and co-wrote the organisations’ environment strategy.
Prior to this, she worked as an environment project manager delivering global environmental awareness training and systems, and as an arts manager in Japan, Thailand, and Cuba. Jenny believes that we can learn from an international approach to responding to climate change and has a passion for calling out ‘Greenwash’.
She recently joined the Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation as Chief Executive, supporting contemporary art, science, humanities and social issues between the UK and Japan, is a Visiting Fellow for International Arts Projects at the University of Derby, and a board member of London based organisations A.P.T Art Studios and Gallery and ATMA Dance.
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