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Wonder and meaning that won’t go extinct — even in the Anthropocene
11.25.2016, 4:57 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

calendar_year

A new year is on the horizon.  smudge studio’s current project, Living Deep Time Calendar Year 000001, is an interactive calendar that creates contexts for you to live time creatively and practice time differently in 002017.

Read more about the project and order calendar sets through the smudge website.  Orders placed by December 5, 002016 will ship by December 15th.

Maybe like us, you think it’s time to change the way we humans are living time on this planet.

Maybe like us, you think art can be a mysteriously powerful vehicle for doing just that.

When you practice Living Deep Time Calendar Year 000001, you connect to the many, and often strange, time beings beyond yourself.

You put into effect a channel for creating wonder and meaning in your life that won’t go extinct — not even in the Anthropocene.



Live Time Differently this Year
10.31.2016, 10:10 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

11_kruse Living Deep Time Calendar Year 000001

There is one week left to activate your chance to live your own Living Deep Time Calendar Year 000001, and gift the experience to friends.  Calendar rewards are available until November 8th via our publications campaign.

38_1from Living Deep time Calendar Year 000001

Living Deep Time Calendar Year 000001  includes a set of 46, 4.5” x 5.25” elliptical cards.  The cards are composed of original artwork and photography resulting from our year of performative research.

This calendar doesn’t simply track weeks and months – it puts you in relation to time-scapes that are much larger and much smaller than the ones depicted on usual desk calendars. Activated throughout a year, it offers an intimate experience for sensing how we, and all other beings and things, are made up of the times of other things and beings.

It invites users to sense material connections to the deep geologic past and deep geologic futures.

Its invitation to creative engagement is designed to offer a means for discovering ongoing wonder and appreciation for time’s forces, challenges, and surprises in this new epoch called the Anthropocene.

 



Practices for Living Time: Amulets for the Anthropocene
10.14.2016, 12:48 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Last weekend we had the pleasure of facilitating a workshop in San Francisco entitled Amulets for the Anthropocene: Practices for Living in and as Change, thanks to an invitation from Professor Stephen Zavestoski at University of San Francisco.  His ambitious, interdisciplinary Davies Seminar entitled Making Sense of the Anthropocene invites students to work at the “intersection of art, activism and academics to find the places where new stories are emerging about who we are, how we might go about living the Anthropocene, and what this means for our future.” The course features a series of guest presenters.

For our “presentation,” we offered an interactive workshop that was staged outdoors in Golden Gate Park.  It began with a demonstration tea ceremony at Park’s Japanese Tea Garden, the oldest public Japanese garden in the United States. The garden layout is inspired by Shinto beliefs (spirits manifested in nature) and Buddhist landscape design. Both are the result of cultural practices that hinge on “slow,” close observation and aesthetic contemplation.

garden_gateentrance gate to the Japanese Tea Garden, Golden Gate Park

We designed the workshop out of a sense that there is an urgent need for practices that invite humans to pay close attention to the changes that are the Anthropocene, hold the thought of the reality of this new epoch, and build psychological and emotional capacities to meet and respond creatively to the unstable conditions we will continuously encounter in these new times.

For us, close observation assists in fostering a deeper awareness of what we face as a species and capacities to invent new ways to live the Anthropocene in our daily lives. The act of cultivating psychological, physical and spiritual capacities for co-existing with big and fast change in the Anthropocene are as vital as any infrastructural, scientific, and preparatory/adaptive actions. They generate new sensations and meanings—potentials that open the future to new actions and arrangements—even as the future seems to be closing down.

We see the Japanese garden and tea ceremony as offering cultural practices shaped by awareness of and appreciation for change itself and refined over hundreds, sometimes thousands of years.  They also offer contexts for slowing down and experiencing today’s changing material conditions.

For example, the several centuries-old Japanese tea ceremony is a highly intentional gathering of people who become present to each other for a brief time by sharing hospitality and attuning to seasonal and contextual changes. The ceremony emphasizes the relational effects of intentional gesture and carefully prescribed physical conduct. In the context of our workshop, we offered points of entry for engagement:

  • How a traditional practice such as creating tea sweets to celebrate the nuances of the four “natural” seasons might assist us in attuning to the unprecedented, strange, volatile weather systems of climate change,
  • how performative gestures of hospitality and humility enacted during a tea ceremony might inform and inspire social conduct in times of over-population and limited resources,
  • how a traditional garden’s arrangements of rocks and water might acknowledge their powers as non-human forces, even as the garden functions as an urban park punctuated continuously by smells, sights and sounds of the Anthropocene.

ceremony_tableOmotesenke demonstration table for the tea ceremony

In preparation we sent guests a practice specifically created for the workshop entitled:  Practice for Living Time in and as the Anthropocene.

The practice was created to assist participants in generating ideas, images and objects that could then inform their creation of an Amulet for the Anthropocene.

practice_small

Before going into the Japanese Garden for the tea ceremony, we invited participants to make a deliberate intention to invent a practice they would activate for themselves over the next hour and a half. They would enact the practice as a way of taking them out of their habitual ways of experiencing, and assisting them in more deliberately sensing changes unfolding around them.

Guests were invited to explore how they might closely observe material conditions (geologic/anthropogenic) assembling around and through them. Such as, sensing how the green, matcha tea is a material that has been exquisitely produced by its producers’ attunements to seasonal changes.  And how our drinking of this imported tea in San Francisco includes entanglements with material realities of global capital, distribution, and consumption. And, also, that all objects around us are entangled with material realities that extend into the times of the deep geologic past as well as the far future.

After a brief introduction we moved into the Japanese Garden. San Francisco’s fleet week events thundered overhead and rendered a potent juxtaposition and sharpened awareness of the active space above us while the Omotesenke tea ceremony demonstration unfolded for guests.

sweet

 

sky_demo

Omamori, a kind of Japanese amulet, is a small ubiquitous pouch found in Japan.  People often purchase them at shrines and temples, attach them to backpacks or purses, and “live with” them for the span of one year. They are believed to offer protection and good luck during this time, a kind of “safe passage” for a certain event or context. After a year they are typically replaced and renewed.

Common omamori include amulets for successful passing of exams, traffic safety, safe childbirth, good health, finding a mate, safe travel.

Following the tea ceremony, and after 30 minutes of taking up the Practice for Living Time in and as the Anthropocene on their own in the Park, workshop participants created amulets for the Anthropocene.

park_amulet

Amulets were made with the intention of “holding the thought” of the Anthropocene’s reality for one year. We asked, how might the creation of this amulet provide relief, wonder and wayfinding for everyday life in the Anthropocene? How might an amulet assist in holding the thought of some material reality or being that was in the midst of undergoing a planetary phase shift? We invited participants to consider setting a reminder on their smart phone for a year from the day, to see how the intentions they expressed through their omamori had unfolded.

The resulting amulets spanned a variety of content and intentions.

We wish for safe passage over the next year for all the amulets created — and offer sincere thanks to Stephen and all workshop participants.

amy_afforestwork-in-progress by Amy Balkin

jasonamulet by Jason Groves

matthewamulet by Matthew Cruz

aaronamulet by Aaron Czerny

amyamulet by Amy Balkin

jeffreyamulet by Jeffrey Blumenthal

ameliaamulet by Amelia Letvin

cameronamulet by Cameron Hughes



A Calendar for Living Times: Living Deep Time Calendar Year 000001 is ready for publication!
10.04.2016, 10:01 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

1_1After a year of research, design and production it’s ready for publication — a new calendar for grounding and navigating your life’s time in this strange new epoch of the Anthropocene.

We  launched the publication campaign for our project on Kickstarter, please check it out!   For a small pledge, you will be rewarded with a Living Deep Time 000001 Calendar, shipping by Dec. 15th, just in time for the December solstice.

When we started our research and design process, we had no idea what the Living Deep Time Calendar 000001 would look like or how it might be used. But we knew it would need to be a very different sort of calendar.  Because Earth is undergoing a time change. In fact, geologists say we’ve crossed into an entirely new geologic “season”: the Anthropocene. Time seems to be speeding up, pressing in, running out, intensifying, multiplying its forces and speeds, crisscrossing itself.

We need a strange new calendar for these strange new times. Human Standardized Time isn’t the time habitat our species evolved within. Many things and beings cannot thrive or even live according to its speeds and forces.  Humans included.

We have to adapt.

calendar_year

Living Deep Time Calendar Year 000001 is a daily practice that can help you adapt your own life’s rhythms to the times of the Anthropocene.

The funds from last year’s Kickstarter campaign allowed us to explore time habitats of the Anthropocene—that unrecognizable new epoch that is “now.” We unleashed our life’s time from our current calendars. We did field research into rich and strange temporalities all around us, and that took us far beyond human standardized time.

Here are some things we realized:

  • When you use any sort of calendar, you’re choosing to practice and perpetuate a certain kind of time.
  • We humans have always been tangled up with time-scapes much larger and much smaller than the ones depicted on our usual desk calendars.
  • We, and all other beings and things, are made up of the times of other things and beings.
  • We, and all things, have material connections to the deep geologic past and are increasingly entangled with deep geologic futures.
  • The times of life forms and material things on our planet are both of us and beyond us. These realizations filled us with wonder and appreciation.

We decided that the Living Deep Time Calendar Year 000001 could not simply track the weeks and months of standardized human time. It had to be an aesthetic provocation to create new ways of living time in the Anthropocene.

Because what we need is a calendar for co-existing with times beyond ourselves and our own species.

 Living Deep Time Calendar Year 000001 consists of:

  • a 46 card set, including three introductory cards and 43 poetic images with accompanying text.  They will escort you into encounters with the (often strange) times of a wide variety of things and beings.  Printed on both sides of elliptically shaped, 4.5″ x 5.25″, card stock.
  • naturally finished wood holder for displaying and interacting with the images and text, 
  • cotton-muslin bag to hold the collection of calendar cards,  
  • 6″ x 9″ illustration that you can mark daily to visualize where you are within the time-producing movements of the earth around the sun. 

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f013f547bbaece5b2bec46705268966e_original

The 43 calendar cards are your vehicles to:

  • Observe the massive and intimate forces of time within and around you.
  • Wonder at time’s speeds and scales.
  • Draw inspiration from time’s wild creativeness.
  • Navigate big fast change in the Anthropocene.
  • Re-score your own distracted “modern” rhythms.

The Living Deep Time Calendar 000001 includes images and text for the times of:

  • experience
  • fiber optic cables
  • temporary housing
  • Ise Jingu
  • the galactic year
  • the color blue
  • uranium
  • the human body
  • the ancestors
  • the fifth season
  • the hurricane
  • corals
  • kintsugi
  • jellyfish
  • the journey
  • soils
  • the cloud
  • plastic
  • bacteria
  • the zodiac
  • + more!

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The Times of Shooting Stars, from Living Deep Time Calendar Year 0000119_1

The Times of Change, from Living Deep Time Calendar Year 000001

Maybe like us, you think it’s time to change the way we humans are living time on this planet.

Maybe like us, you think art can be a mysteriously powerful vehicle for doing just that.

When you practice Living Deep Time Calendar Year 000001, you connect to the many, and often strange, time beings beyond yourself.

You put into effect a channel for creating wonder and meaning in your life that won’t go extinct — not even in the Anthropocene.

We invite you to activate Living Deep Time Calendar Year 000001 as a medium for noticing and appreciating wildly diverse speeds, scales, rhythms and durations of time swirling around you, within you, and as you.  Use it as inspiration to create relief, wonder, and livable time in the Anthropocene.



The Last Eight Minutes
09.08.2016, 2:37 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

light_beam

The sun, as many people know, is located some 93 million miles from Earth. That’s a large, even incomprehensible number. Yet, it’s the number that afforded just the right conditions for humans and all other current forms of life to evolve and thrive. A few million miles closer or further, and it would be a completely different story.

Our recent project, Living Deep Time Calendar Year 000001, led us to think about the sun quite a bit. After all, over millennia, earth/sun/moon dynamics have been the cycles of change that we humans have referenced in our attempts to develop meaningful calendars and understandings of time on Earth.

During year 000001 of our project, we paused with the reality that — when we’re outdoors, everything we see is bathed in eight-minute old sunlight (except for those few photons around that are actually older and have traveled farther to get here).

It’s amazing when you actually stop and think about this. The sun you see in the sky? It’s an eight-minute old image constantly being re-created. See your friend or partner across the yard? You are seeing them through eight-minute old sunlight. That “getable” eight minute duration somehow renders the extreme distance of the sun more accessible and relatable. Though it doesn’t lessen the imaginative effort it takes to grasp the fact that those photons that left the sun’s surface only eight minutes ago got here at an incomprehensible speed of 186,000 miles per second.  Not to mention the fact that their journey from the sun’s core, where they were produced, to the surface, where they were sent off into space, took many thousands of years. Or the fact that there will be a moment in the very far future when the sun becomes a white dwarf and its streams of photons slowly fade to black.  And that will inaugurate a very different sort of “last” eight minutes …

For now, the photons just keep steaming into our habit on Earth, showering it with energy that fuels pretty much every living thing. And the sun’s steadfastness as producer and deliverer of light actually offers some reassurance in the (recently) scientifically accepted epoch of the Anthropocene. So far, that reliable steam of photons feeding and illuminating us is one aspect of our Earth-bound habitat and our experiences of time that remains beyond human ability to alter.

We made the eight-minute relay of life-affording light the theme of our fourth and final postcard dispatch from the Living Deep Time Calendar Year 000001 project. And we plan to stage The Last Eight Minutes in a variety of experimental and theatrical forms in coming months.

We’re happy to announce that we will release the Living Deep Time Calendar Year 000001 through a Kickstarter publishing campaign in early October.  So, stay tuned for details on how to get your own calendar for living time differently in the Anthropocene, and enjoy the sunlight.

demotea_postcard_layout flare

 

wood_beam



KonMari Method for Climate Change
08.17.2016, 2:07 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

crumble2all images, Herring Cove Beach parking lot, Cape Cod National Seashore, July 2016

As described in a recent New York Time article, when Marie Kondo (aka KonMari) arrives at a house or apartment where she will do her work, she first sits down in the middle of the room and greets the space. She then begins the process of assisting those who inhabit the space, to lead a “clutter-free” life.  She does this work of “tidying” in the name of bringing more joy to those who live there, and perhaps to even bring more joy to the space itself.

We like to imagine that when Kondo is sitting in these homes during her initial greeting, she might be sensing something akin to what Richard McGuire illustrates in his brilliant graphic novel, Here —  namely, the lively, vivid personal and material histories that pulse through, under and around a house or apartment and also crisscross the location’s geographic and geological histories. Rather than an act of lunacy, the pause to “say hello” to a space could allow an individual to sense the forces and histories of that place on its own terms. Each home becomes a case study in multiple, material temporalities of humans and non-humans that extend into its past and future, including the things that inhabitants have acquired and are living with.

Kondo’s concept of “joy” is not a superficial state of being that can be purchased.  It’s a state that has been dampered by the clutter in many of the homes she helps to tidy. Taffy Brodesser-Akner, the author of a recent piece on Marie Kondo in the Times Magazine, writes that Kondo had “realized that the work she was doing as a tidying consultant was far more psychological than it was practical. Tidying wasn’t just a function of your physical space; it was a function of your soul.” That’s why Kondo can’t do the real work of de-cluttering for her clients.  That work required her clients to hold each item they have acquired and ask themselves:  “Does this spark joy?” If not, it doesn’t belong in their homes or in their lives.

Brodesser-Akner goes on to explain what comes next:  Kondo

“… says that to fold a shirt the way everyone folds a shirt (a floppy rectangle) instead of the way she thinks you should (a tight mass of dignified envelope-shaped fabric so tensile that it could stand upright) is to deprive that shirt of the dignity it requires to continue its work, i.e. hanging off your shoulders until bedtime. She would like your socks to rest. She would like your coins to be treated with respect. She thinks your tights are choking when you tie them off in the middle. She would like you to thank your clothes for how hard they work and ensure that they get adequate relaxation between wearings. Before you throw them out — and hoo boy will you be throwing them out — she wants you to thank them for their service. She wants you to thank that blue dress you never wore, tell it how grateful you are that it taught you how blue wasn’t really your color and that you can’t really pull off an empire waist. She wants you to override the instinct to keep a certain thing because an HGTV show or a home-design magazine or a Pinterest page said it would brighten up your room or make your life better.”

These powerfully charged words:  “dignity,” “respect,” “rest,” “thank,” “service” —  are all remarkably addressed to seemingly mundane things such as socks, coins, shirts and magazines. What does KonMarie know that most of us don’t?

The same day (July 6th, 2016) that the piece on Kondo appeared, two other articles in the Times described communities in Virginia and Massachusetts that were losing landmass from the effects of climate change. When read alongside the Kondo profile, these stories resonated differently than the usual “climate change horror stories.”

The first, “Should the United States Save Tangier Island from Oblivion?” (subtitled: “It’s the kind of choice that climate change will be forcing over and over”) detailed challenges being faced by those living on Tangier Island in the Chesapeake Bay.  It’s one of hundreds of islands off the coast of Virginia that have been washing away due to rising seas. The second article, “At a Cape Cod Landmark, a Strategic Retreat from the Ocean,” explained how the Cape Cod National Seashore is implementing a “strategic retreat” from one of the Seashore’s most popular beaches, Herring Cove, due to extreme beach erosion.  We happened to be in Provincetown that week, and a comment by Chris Miller, director of the Provincetown’s department of natural resources, rang especially true for us:  “Change is very difficult, especially when it’s your favorite place in the world.”

The reality of climate change resonates differently when the national new talks about your home being lost “forever” (in terms of human scales of time). We couldn’t help wondering if a KonMari-inspired method of addressing climate change might be useful far beyond its intended goal of decluttering homes.

crumble3

The same dignity, respect and gratitude can be addressed to the landmass being “lost” to erosion in Provincetown — along with the social, biological and material histories that are “being lost” with this land. Despite this wildly different context, KonMarie’s approach provides an inspiring means to access what is materially changing around us — and to do so in ways that don’t always place humans at the center of concerns.

According to the Times, in the United States, “roughly five million people and 2.6 million homes are [currently] situated less than four feet above high tide.

“There will be dozens of Miamis and thousands of Tangiers. ‘The Outer Banks, the Delmarva Peninsula, Long Island, the Jersey Shore — they’re in the same boat… It’s going to just take a little longer for them to get to where Tangier is now.’ An excruciating question is how we will decide which coastal communities to rescue and which to relinquish to the sea. But a number of other difficulties attend those decisions. How do we re-engineer the land, roads and neighborhoods of the places deemed worthy of salvation? How do we relocate residents whose homes can’t (or won’t) be saved? Also, there’s the money problem.”

The next few decades will usher in long and slow geologic processes that have very uncertain outcomes. As Paul Bierman, a geologist from Vermont explains, the land off the coast of Virginia “is likely to be sinking for many thousands of years.”

The Times article on Tangier suggests that the area might be completely gone in 50 years.  Extending the life of Tangier even this long would require a lot of engineering, including breakwaters, pumps, vegetation.  It would also necessitate overcoming “immense economic and political obstacles” in the process that offer an “early glimpse of a problem so enormously complex, so ‘wicked’… it seems to defy resolution. Imagine this scaling up for Miami Beach (expected to be largely uninhabitable by 2050) or many other large cities along global coastlines.”

An act of managed retreat, like that now underway on the Cape Cod National Seashore, embraces the idea that we ultimately can’t hold back the water forever. It’s a “wrenching decision.” But arguably, it’s more sane than launching into decades of stalling efforts that all too quickly arrive at the same outcome.

“Given the forecast of future sea level rise over the next century and beyond, every problem that we have along the coast right now will only increase.”  – Rob Thieler USGS, Woods Hole

After spending three weeks in May on Captiva Island, FL for a residency entitled “Rising Waters,” we wrote the following:

“The reality of rising sea levels globally and locally necessitates migrations of many sorts, including migrations of ideas, emotions, sense of place, self and other. We sense that psychological and philosophical migrations of habitual ways of thinking and feeling are as vital to realizing the theme of the residency, “graceful migration,” as are infrastructural, scientific and preparatory/adaptive actions.”

As artists/humans, we are committed to imagining and inventing how we might meet the reality of a changing planet in our daily lives. We know we have a long way to go in being able to philosophically and psychology meet the scale of the changes actually underway.

Near Tangier Island, there is an island named Poplar. Poplar shrunk from 1,200 acres to 5 acres between 1920 and 1990.  When islanders cut down the island’s trees for lumber, they facilitated rampant, human manufactured erosion.

A woman whose family has lived on Tangier Island for generations, takes her boat to an area called the Uppards nearly everyday to walk the beach. There, she steps

“gingerly over fallen headstones while searching for bottles and buttons or taking a moment to appreciate the blooms of a dying rosebush planted by someone (an ancestor?) more than a century ago… She had found toy marbles and old coins and coffin handles; she had also discovered arrowheads and a Native American ax head of smoothed stone that must have preceded the settlement of Canaan by many centuries. But every week, she said, there was a bit less land and brush. And every visit was an effort to gather the final, sodden artifacts of a place that would vanish, almost completely, within a few years.”

It’s a difficult question, but is it possible to feel the “joy” that Kondo’s process asks us conjure in the context of so much loss?  From within the reality of climate change? Might a KonMari-inspired “method,” when applied to climate change, allow us to winnow through the chaos and distractions and access how and why we value the specific things that we are keeping for now and also those that we are in the mist of losing or letting go? Could this process give us a means for thanking these things, and places “for their service” on our behalf? It’s psychological soul work, but perhaps this time and labor intensive process could generate new senses of and capacities for joy.

As Brodesser-Akner writes of Kondo’s process: “We are told we don’t have time to have this kind of exchange. We should be doing something more productive.”

Elizabeth Royte writes in follow-up to the Kondo piece, “Be Mindful of What you Consume Instead,” that rather than asking clients to “consider their objects’ spirit”, it’s “better for planetary health, I think, to contemplate the tangible resources that went into making these goods – wood, metals, minerals, oil, plants, animals, water, energy and human labor.”

This is great advice. And to us, the “spirit” of an object most certainly includes the literal materials and processes that compose them —  wood, metal, animals, labor.  Accessing this “spirit” is where the joy comes in.  As Royte goes on to explain: “Knowing where our goods come from and understanding where they ultimately go — there is no ‘away’ — may help curb our acquisitive habits… [and] instead of asking if a household object brings joy, ask yourself — the next time you’re tempted to buy something new — how long it’s likely to please you, how long it will last, whether it can be repaired and what kind of trash it will ultimately make.”

crumble1

Given that the Anthropocene is changing now so many things we consider fundamental to our lives, perhaps a KonMarie-like method can help us rethink what we consider to be “useful,” “needed,” or “productive.” It might help us rethink what things and processes are really generating “joy” within, between, and around us before they’re no longer there.  And, perhaps a KonMarie-like method can allow joy to become part how we connect with and consider thing and processes both within our lives and beyond them.

 

 

 

 

 

 



Conveyance
05.28.2016, 3:12 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

blue_linecyanotype of .03 inch thick line, the average amount that waters of Captiva Island, FL are rising every ten days, from Conveyance, smudge studio 2016

We just returned from three weeks on Captiva Island, Florida as part of the Rising Waters II Confab hosted by the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation.  Despite the standard dictionary definition of confab (to talk together casually, and to fill in gaps in one’s memory with fabrications that one believes to be facts), our time on Captiva was not only filled with playful and casual conversation, it was also remarkably challenging and immersive.

Soon after we arrived, we learned that at such a (relatively) southern latitude, the speed at which we are riding the Earth’s eastward spin is 300 mph faster than when we’re in New York. To our eyes, sunrises and sunsets on Captiva proceeded at a palpably faster pace than we’re used to seeing off the Northeast coast.

After a few days, the sea seemed to be rising faster around us too. We did a simple math equation based on recent climate change models, to visualize scientists’ conclusions that the waters around Captiva are rising about .003 inches each day.

We drew a pencil line that is.03 inches thick to represent a ten-day rise.

The highest elevation on Captiva Island is approximately eleven feet. The average elevation on Rauschenberg Foundation property where we were staying is 3.1 feet. The property faces the risk of 285 tidally-induced flood days by 2045.*

We spent several days and evenings working inside and on the deck of the Fish House. We experienced the sensations of remoteness that it affords.  We watched pelicans glide a feather’s height above the water. We listened to the ceiling fan and watched waves. We paged through collections Ding Darling’s political cartoons here, where the renowned and revered artist, Pulitzer prize winner, and conservationist drew many of them. We were gratified by the generous and creative human spirit of Robert Rauschenberg, who acquired the Fish House and lovingly preserved it for artists to use as inspiration.

The reality of rising sea levels globally and locally necessitates migrations of many sorts, including migrations of ideas, emotions, sense of place, self and other. We sense that psychological and philosophical migrations of habitual ways of thinking and feeling are as vital to realizing the theme of the residency, “graceful migration,” as are infrastructural, scientific and preparatory/adaptive actions.

Graceful migration — how to live with the realities of massive change without being overtaken by paralyzing fear, depression, guilt.

Our three weeks on Captiva led us to invent a project we decided to call Conveyance.  Via an aperture in a shoebox, we created cyanotype images of 15 sites and structures on the Rauschenberg Foundation property.

The medial, processual nature of the cyanotype involved us in the material changing that IS these structures. We waited for the light. We noted the humidity, time of day. We collaborated with the sun to convey form and elements to paper via a shoebox aperture. We waited more. We immersed paper in cold water.

Reflections of structures came into view, incomplete images signaling from within a groundless sea of blue. The stuff that makes them and the sites that hold them will go on transforming into very deep futures.  The subtle creative spirits and histories that dwell within these buildings also are embarking on a great migration, propelled by planetary phase shifts.

We offer this series of fifteen cyanotypes as a means of conveyance, escort, accompaniment.

fish_housethe Fish House, Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, Captiva Island, FL, smudge studio 

fish_house_cyanFish House, from Conveyance, smudge studio 2016

liz_boxprocess

sinkprocess1

sinkprocess2

waldo_cottageWaldo Cottage, Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, Captiva Island, FL, smudge studio

waldo_cyan

OH_installproject installation at Rising Waters II Open Studio, Captiva Island, FL May 24, 002016


* “Coastal Risk Rapid Assessment”, Coastal Risk Consulting, May 2016


** Sincere thanks to our hosts and collaborators both at the Confab and at the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation.