Ecologies of Care

Clare Humphries and Rebecca Mayo

Please note submissions are now closed

Ecologies of Care invites panellists to explore the possibilities for care in the colonial Anthropocene. The impact of human activity on Earth’s ecosystems is one of the greatest challenges of the twenty-first century. This panel asks print-informed thinkers to consider the consequences of human-led ecological change, and to discuss ways that print practice, and discourse, might foster new ways to live. Panellists might examine notions enmeshed in the making and circulation of prints—such as dissemination, materiality, and social engagement—as modes of action that cultivate ecological consciousness and ways of being in-relation.

In 2021, the International Commission on Stratigraphy proposed formally defining a new slice of the geologic record—the Anthropocene—to mark the profound ways in which humans have altered the planet. Most scientists now accept that humanity is influencing our planet in unprecedented ways, equaling the impact of geological forces like volcanic eruption and earthquakes.

However, although the term Anthropocene implies a universal humanity it has been argued that this new epoch began with colonialism. Colonialism integrated the world into global capitalist markets and reordered life on the planet. It re-distributed plants and diseases across the continents, introduced invasive species, led new waves of extinctions and brought genocide to First Nations peoples. The wealth gained through the devastation of indigenous culture and land accelerated the Industrial Revolution and drove the rise of fossil fuels which have warmed the planet beyond interglacial norms.

At a time of profound political, environmental and social crisis, ecologies of care invites conversation about how print-informed communities of practice and methods of making can contribute to critical discourses surrounding the Colonial Anthropocene. This panel will open discussions on how print-based, contemporary art practices contribute to modes of care-giving for Earth’s ecosystems at the local scale.

Please submit your proposals directly to this link by Friday 4 March 2022. Please include your name, affiliation, email address, a brief synopsis and accompanying image, a 100-word bio and an image of yourself.