New IETM Publication “Art for the Planet’s Sake” looks at how the arts tackle environmental issues

Climate Change: We need action to reinvent our world. The arts help us imagine how.

Scientists inform us that our civilization is nearing collapse, unless we implement a radical change towards a low-carbon and low-resource economy. But how can we imagine the sustainable future we hear communicated at the UN Climate Talks and other international gatherings? 

Art is able to tap into a different instinct, rationale and emotion than political rhetoric, corporate sales-patter or even scientific data. Culture can make the complex language of environmental research relevant to the needs and worries of a global people.

Artists and creators can imagine the future, freely denounce and critique social and economic systems that protect harmful working practice, at the cost of our environment. Art can engage the emotions that cause people to act.

IETM launches its new publication Art for the Planet’s Sake that looks at how contemporary arts tackle environmental issues in terms of artistic contents, managerial practices and venues management.  Art for the Planet’s Sake is produced in collaboration with COAL – Coalition for Arts and Environment, Paris and written by Hannah Van Den Bergh.

This publication seeks to capture a snapshot of the activity being pioneered by the arts and cultural sector. It explores the role and power of artists and creators to be the messengers of climate change and presents how arts communities try to work sustainably, thus extending ‘sustainable practice’ beyond a purely conceptual subject matter in art. 

A set of guest contributions from five international experts (Chantal Bilodeau, Marco Kusumawijaya, Mike Van Graan, Sacha Kagan and Yasmine Ostendorf) enrich the publication, touching upon issues like measuring impacts, the connections between artists and local communities, the Sustainable Development Goals, sustainability as ‘response-ability’, and how cultural differences change the possible approaches to sustainability.