Visionary solutions can’t be forced. They just kind of… happen. That “Eureka!” response to an obstacle requires hours of thought about the potential solutions that have all been maddeningly mulled over time and time before.
Finns are exceptionally good at innovation. Romantic composer Jean Sibelius. Open-source software visionary Linus Torvalds. World-renowned information philosopher Pekka Himanen. Founders of the pioneer fashion company Marimekko Viljo and Armi Ratia. Women’s rights activist Minna Canth. Cell phone inventors Nokia. I think it’s the long winters — nothing really to do but sit around and think.
Developing a brand new solution requires spending hours and hours pondering all facets of the problem you are facing. In these days holed up and staring out at the snow, I am defining the questions that this project is seeking to answer. These questions are tossing about in my brain like stones tumbling against each other in a polisher:
What defines “visual art”?
How is visual art incorporated into daily life in this community?
How do artists view their role in their community?
How do community members view the artists?
How is the support system for the artists structured?
How do artists cultivate trust with the other members of their community?
How do artists cultivate trust with people from outside their community?
How to artists spark productive dialogue around social responsibility?
What elements of the social infrastructure are required for artists to incite change?
What solutions do the artists provide?
Is art really necessary to the resolution of the community’s dilemmas?
The snow and isolation in Hämeenkyrö force me to sit still and think them all over. And over. And over. The combination of time, quiet, a plentitude of creative minds, and sheer stubbornness will uncover the answers to these questions because artists do innovative things. Do you have more questions for me to throw into the polisher? Do you already have answers to these questions? Feel free to leave them as a comment or send me an email.
The Strata Project's global correspondent, Catherine J Howard, is spending 2013 on a voyage, known as the 13/13/13 Sketchbook Project, to 13 collectives of artists across the globe that use visual art to challenge and revitalize their communities. To relay what she learns about their techniques and culture, she will write a weekly guest column for The Strata Project's blog. She is also updating the 13/13/13 Sketchbook Project blog daily with interviews, photographs, and anecdotes and publishing her sketchbook from each location.
Ultimately, she will co-write a publication documenting the dialogues around the globe surrounding high quality contemporary art in rural communities in collaboration with The Strata Project. Catherine is an artist, teacher, and curator hailing from Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina in the USA. She has previously written for the Clarion Content and nc artblog, in addition to her own blog documenting a life-altering trip to Cape Town, South Africa.
Azolla is one of the world's fastest growing plants and a rich source of nutrients. Yet it is virtually unexplored as a foodstuff for human consumption. In The Azolla Cooking and Cultivation Project artists, researchers, farmers, gardeners, chefs and scientists experiment with cooking and cultivating thewater fern Azolla. The book is available as free pdf, as paperback at Amazon US / UK and as e-book at Kindle Store. Project is created by artist Erik Sjödin. An artist and researcher based in Stockholm and Bergen.
Thanks for The Center for the Sustainable Practise in the Arts to inspire this topic.
Outlandia is an off-grid, treehouse observatory imagined by artists London Fieldworks and designed by award-winning Malcolm Fraser Architects. Inspired by childhood dens, wildlife hides and bothies, by forest outlaws and Japanese poetry platforms, it is located in a copse of Norwegian Spruce and Larch in Glen Nevis on Forestry Commission land at the foot of Ben Nevis in the Scottish Highlands, two miles from the town of Fort William. Outlandia is an artist-led project built as a platform for fieldwork and cross-disciplinary research, which during its time of service could provide a multi-purpose platform for the use of diverse community groups as well as selected artists. Outlandia is in line with The Scottish Forestry Strategy that aims to create opportunities for more people to enjoy trees, woods and forests in Scotland, and to help communities benefit from woods and forests. Read more.
Plastic Bottles (2007) via Chris Jordan: Two million plastic beverage bottles, the number used in the US every five minutes.
Deadlines vary according to the country of the applicant:
Japan: 15 January 2013
Norway: 15 January 2013
Denmark: 15 February 2013
Finland: 28 February 2013
Sweden: 1 March 2013
The Scandinavia-Japan Sasakawa Foundation provides grants and scholarships for the exchange between Japan and the Nordic countries.
Applications should be submitted to the local office in country where the applicant has his/her permanent residence. For details, applicants should inquire directly to the local office in their respective country.
Read more & Apply
Call for applications to participate at the international exhibition NordArt 2013 NordArt 2013: 08.06.–06.10.2013
Deadline 31st of January
Exhibition area: The old foundry building in the Carlshütte (22,000 sqm), ACO Wagenremise (400 sqm), a 80,000 square metre sculpture park, as well as public spaces in the town. For an impression of the exhibtion site visit the virtual tour.
Application documents by post: A4 (or US Lletter size) folder with the following documents:
1. Application form
2. Artist’s CV (short version)
3. List of the most important solo and group exhibitions
4. Photos of approx. 10 works which could be shown at Nord Art. Please label all photos with the title, year of origin, technique, and size.
Please do not send any digital information or originals. Exception: DVD’s of video installations and performances. Optional documents: own catalogues The return of application documents is not possible.
31st of January 2013
Read more & Apply
Da Nang International Stone Sculpture Symposium in Vietnam calls artists to submit proposals for stone sculpture artworks. Ten international artists will be invited to join 10 Vietnamese artists to make artworks on-site in summer 2013 at the ‘Arts and Creativity Camp: Stone Sculpture’. The Symposium will take place in Danang, Vietnam from 20 July 2013 to 16 August 2013.
Deadline. February 5, 2013
Criteria for Evaluation
(1) Criteria for Evaluation in Primary Selection:
20% of the performance result for sculpting.
30% of the performance result for the description of the works
30% of the performance result for designing the work.
20% of the performance result for works implemented in 3 recent years.
Primary Selection’s Procedures: Sketches are assessed by Arts Jury for the
selection of 40 artists to participate in Round 2.
(2) Criteria for Evaluation in Final Selection:
30% of the performance result for creativity.
30% of the performance result for the idea.
40 % of the performance result for the model.
Final Selection’s Procedures for Danang Arts and Creativity Camp:
Works are assessed by Arts Jury for the selection of 20 artists to participate in Danang Camp.
Nancy Holt : Sightlines
Utah Museum of Contemporary Art
OCTOBER 19, 2012–JANUARY 20, 2013
Nancy Holt Sightlines will offer an in-depth look at the early projects of this important American artist whose pioneering work falls at the intersection of art, architecture, and time-based media. Since the late 1960s, Holt has created a far-reaching body of work, including Land Art, films, videos, site-specific installations, artist's books, concrete poetry, and major sculpture commissions. Nancy Holt Sightlines showcases the artist's transformation of the perception of the landscape through the use of different observational modes in her early films, videos, and related works from 1966 to 1980. With her novel use of cylindrical forms, light, and techniques of reflection, Holt developed a unique aesthetics of perception, which enabled visitors to her sites like Sun Tunnels (1973-76), located in Utah's Great Basin, to engage with the landscape in new and challenging ways.
Nancy Holt Sightlines is a traveling exhibition organized by the Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Art Gallery, Columbia University and curated by Alena J. Williams. Major support for this exhibition is provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, The Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in Fine Arts, and UMFA Members.
Via Utah Museum of Fine Arts
Application deadline: February 28th, 2013
The Coal Prize Art & Environment rewards each year a project by a contemporary artist involved in environmental issues. Its goals are to promote and support the vital role which art and creation play in raising awareness, supporting concrete solutions and encouraging a culture of ecology. The winner is selected out of ten short-listed by a jury of well-known specialists in art, research, ecology and sustainable development.
The prize carries an award of 10 000 euros. Launched in 2010 by the French organization Coal, the coalition for art and sustainable development, the Coal Prize is supported by the French Ministry of Culture and Communication, the French Ministry of Ecology and Sustainable Development, the National Centre of Fine Arts (CNAP), Le Laboratoire, PwC and a private benefactor.
Read more (In French.)
The Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts is pleased to present Michael Jones McKean's The Rainbow: Certain Principles of Light and Shapes Between Forms. The project creates a simple, but phenomenal visual event — a rainbow in the sky. The public artwork will produce temporary rainbows above the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts in Omaha, Nebraska using the most elemental materials: sunlight and rainwater. Throughout the summer, at scheduled times a rainbow will appear above Bemis Center's downtown building