'Luminous Green' is a workshop about the world. About the world that supports life today and about the possible worlds that can support more luminous life in the future. It is a gathering of people who can imagine, cultivate and inhabit such a world. People who consider themselves creative thinkers, doers and makers. Who deploy their creativity and imagination to shape a brighter future, disentangling themselves and their practices from the unsustainable and unnatural. 'Luminous Green' will seek out lush worlds and find fertile ways of growing them.
FoAM invites people who have the vision, determination and commitment to grow beautiful worlds and ways of engaging with them - top-down, bottom-up, from the centre and from the periphery. Bringing together designers and artists, scientists and technologists, professionals and enthusiastic 'do-it-yourselvers', the workshop will be an exclusive opportunity to share knowledge and experience with a selected group of international experts.
The 'Luminous Green' workshop is an adventure into the tangled web of ecological sustainability and ethical living, attempting to forge new symbiotic relationships between the post-industrial human societies and the rest of the earth. We at FoAM, together with our fellow artists, designers, scientists and engineers, are committed to this challenge.
As opposed to a fragmented world, where luminous things glow and green things grow, in a synergetic environment a luminous green symbiont glows and grows. It sheds light, circulates energy, purifies the elements, invents, nourishes, shelters and adorns a place in which all living things delight. A luminous green life form, be it biological or technological, thrives in edge habitats; in their diversity, fertility and strangeness. It gently, yet relentlessly, sculpts its world, all the while allowing the world to fill its existence. An environment composed of and by luminous green things is a place that inspires, gives and enriches life, in all its lavish forms. A luminous green world is drenched in juicy foods, assorted relationships, quirky, but effective designs and technologies, clean air and fresh water, beauty and play, knowledge and imagination.
0. to explore creative and unforeseen ways of dealing with some of the most challenging global problems
1. to reveal the opportunities for cultural workers (artists, designers, writers, etc…) and creative industries in making ecology and ethics a core value of their creative practice; as well as vice versa - employing existing knowledge from these fields to inspire new approaches in ecology and ethics
2. to find and foster links with other fields; to combine existing efforts in order to reach more people, achieve stronger effects; applying an integrated, transdisciplinary approach to problems in which sustainability and culture are entangled; designing and problem solving across multiple benefits
3. to produce, share and transfer knowledge, skills and resources in the field of environmentally and socially sustainable creative practices.
The Luminous Green workshop is initiated to entice artists, designers or creative professionals to combine their efforts and transform currently unsustainable practices in their own fields, and more importantly the world at large. influencing not only their colleagues, but also their audiences and clients.
The workshop is conceived in four parts:
1. In an 'open space' gathering, artists and designers will be joined by engineers, ecologists, experts from media, economics, science, permaculture, philosophy and politics to share information, knowledge and practices in an informal and pro-active manner. We will look for ethical and ecologically friendly alternatives to currently unsustainable cultural practices, able to mitigate the effects of climate change, greenwashing, decrease of bio-diversity and other looming environmental catastophies. We will spawn inspiring propositions, innovative methods and scalable interventions, looking to advance our practice beyond conservation and sustainability. We aim to initiate new and connect existing environmental initiatives, which can benefit from having art and design in their core.
2. In a public seminar we will bring some of the most inspiring and approachable ideas to a wider audience. This part aims to raise awareness of the local (Brussels and Belgium) professional public who can apply this knowledge in their own practice (including designers, artists, technologists, scientists, policy makers, etc.).
3. The technical tutorial is meant for artists using electricity to make and present their artworks (media artists, technological and performance, graphic and fashion designers etc.). The tutorial will focus on power generation, clean power sources, low-power computing and audiovisual displays.
4. Open Lab will conclude the Luminous Green week. The participants of the workshop will be there to discuss, show-and-tell and chill out with interested members of the public.
It is often said that fundamental change in human behaviour becomes possible when encouraged both top-down (by governments and large corporations) and bottom-up (by individuals and their communities). Sandwiched between the top and the bottom, what about the juiciest ingredients of our societies - the scientific, social, technological and cultural innovators? People living on the periphery of political and economic mainstream, neither on the top, nor at the bottom? Not cramped by the mandate to preserve current economic and political dogmas, nor by the pressures of day-to-day survival, they are the people capable of thinking 'out of the box', seeking solutions in unexpected corners of human knowledge and experience. If compartmentalised social systems have caused the current instability, the way out could come from these non-conformist thinkers and makers.
“It is never the beginning or the end that are interesting; the beginning and the end are points. What is interesting is the middle. (…) Not only does grass grow in the middle of things but it grows itself through the middle.”
(Gilles Deleuze and Claire Parnet, 1987, Dialogues II, trans. Hugh Tomlison and Barbara Habberjam, London: Continuum, 39)
Proposed dates: 27 april - 5 may 2007
A week long workshop consisting of: