NOVEMBER 18, 2022 at 10:30am CST
Speaker: Mika Tosca, Associate Professor, School of the Art Institute of Chicago & Robert A Pritzker Visiting Scientist, Francis W. Parker School
Host: Benjamin Keisling
Title: Solarpunk futures | Post-nihilist solutions to the climate crisis emerging from the synthesis of art and environmental science
Abstract: As the climate emergency continues to intensify, much of the public and institutional response to mounting disaster remains stalemated. Perhaps this is the result of nihilist framing of the crisis by activists, media, and scientists, a paradigm often referred to as ‘climate doomerism’. The emerging solarpunk movement—which includes the work of artists, writers, philosophers, and scientists—can provide an alternative, post-nihilistic, pathway for actualizing solutions to climate change. There exists, therefore, an exciting and necessary opportunity for scientists to collaborate with artists to not only improve the communication of climate science, but also to bolster the production of scientific knowledge. In this presentation I present the results of several collaborative projects—inspired by that work—that combine the scientific method with design and art-making processes.
Here we present three approaches that synthesize art and science toward imagining (and building) a more optimistic future: 1) holistic integration of the design process and scientific method, 2) direct pedagogical engagement of the climate crisis in unconventional spaces, and 3) the genesis of abstract art as a vehicle for inspiring action.