Communicating Through Art Practice
This is Artcast Aotearoa. Listen to artists and change-makers offer fresh perspectives on how they’re responding to global issues and trends affecting arts practice. Brought to you by Creative New Zealand’s International Programme – helping artists navigate the shifting tides of the evolving global context.
Chicago-based artist and lifelong environmentalist Margot McMahon has spent her career exploring how art can inspire a social consciousness around sustainability and demonstrate a brighter possible future for us - if we can take action now.
For decades, she has been using sculpture and painting (and recently fiction writing) as mediums to engage the public about the reality of what is happening to our climate and environments, both local and global.
McMahon started her career as a scientific journalist in the late 1970s, a time when scientific consensus was first broadly accepted that human-generated carbon emissions were warming our planet. Finding that her reporting on environmentalism and climate change became instantly politicized, McMahon chose art as a more direct and digestible style of communication of her environmentalism - one that circumvented language or political barriers.
Margot talks about the difficulty of a scientific issue becoming intensely political, the evolution of art institutions such as the Venice Biennale finally coming to the climate issue, and the crucial nature of creating art that communicates about a local context to a local audience.
Original music during the intro and out is by Pickle Darling
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Confronting the Climate Crisis31:07Welcome to Artcast Aotearoa. Listen to artists and change-makers offer fresh perspectives on how they’re responding to global issues and trends affecting arts practice. Brought to you by Creative New Zealand’s International Programme – helping artists navigate the shifting tides of the evolving global context.This episode is hosted by comedian, producer and podcaster Tim Batt and features a discussion with Christian Taylor of Sustainable Theatres Australia (SBA). SBA is a collective of Sydney and Melbourne-based theatremakers and arts administrators, dedicated to greening the theatre industry. They're using powerful international networks by adapting resources created by larger sustainability arts organisations abroad (including Julie's Bicycle) to help Australian productions on the ground use a more environmentally friendly practice.Christian is writer, actor and theatre practitioner, currently undertaking a Masters of Environment at University of Melbourne. He's passionate about interrupting the emotionally halting effects of the climate crisis, particularly on our artists and young people. This korero discusses how we can challenge 'doomerism', the important role of artists during this period, and practical steps that everyone working in the arts can undertake to start greening their individual practice and how we can unify to create powerful, lasting positive change for the world.A written transcript of this episode will be available soon.Original music during the intro and out is by Pickle Darling