Presented by Queer Ecojustice Project and Skins and Clay Studio
The Athens Institute for Contemporary Art announces Queering Earth Day, an art series in honor of the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, organized by Alden DiCamillo (Skins and Clay Studio) and Vanessa Raditz (Queer Ecojustice Project). The program series seeks to create intersectional, interdisciplinary narratives weaving queerness and ecology, bodies and land; narratives that are specific to queer experiences and dreams here in Athens, Georgia and the Southeast.
The organizers invite queer, trans, non-binary, and lgbtqia+ individuals and organizations from the Southeast of the United States to participate as writers, speakers, and presenters in program events. All are invited to attend. Participation and registration details for each event follow below.
Calendar of Events
Tentacular: An Ecoqueer Poetry Reading
April 11, 6:00-8:00 PM, Avid Bookstore
Queer, trans, non-binary, and lgbtqia+ community read original poetry and prose under seven minutes reading length, expressing current queer relationships with land and earth systems, deconstructing and reconstructing meaning of the body and its materiality, and exploring non-linear narratives that allow rethinking of status-quo-based resilience. For more details, see: Call for Participation. Deadline March 31, 2020. All submissions accepted. Open until full. No advance registration is required for attendance at the event.
Prepare for Resilience: Sneak-Peek Screening of Fire & Flood: Queer Resilience in the Era of Climate Change
April 22, 5:30-8:30 PM, Athens Institute for Contemporary Art
An evening of film and community exploring social vulnerability of the queer community to climate disasters. A Resource Fair featuring local community organizations, grassroots activists, and academics working on climate justice, disaster preparedness, public health, and related fields will be followed by Fire & Flood, an in-progress documentary highlighting the voices of 20 queer and trans people in California and Puerto Rico who were part of the community resilience work for the Tubbs Fire and Hurricane Maria in the fall of 2017. Before and after the screening, the film director Vanessa Raditz will lead discussion and activities. Raditz is the co-founder of Queer Ecojustice Project, the #Qready Research Fellow with Out for Sustainability, and a PhD student in Geography at UGA,
Register as an Attendee or Resource Fair Participant
A Word from the Organizers Alden DiCamillo and Vanessa Raditz
We are living in a time of ecological emergency. From food to climate, the earth systems that sustain all life are in peril. While all beings are impacted by this ecological disruption, histories of social, economic, and political marginalization shape ecological vulnerabilities and access to resources for resilience. Through Queering Earth Day, we seek to create space to talk about and unearth the unique ways that LGBTQ+ people experience this ecological distress in our bodies and our communities. Queering Earth Day provokes us to respond to the heteronormativity of the environmental movement and historic processes that have separated queer, trans, and non-binary communities from the land and commons, relegated queer community-building to cities, bars, and consumer spaces, and alienated our communities from movements for ecological justice. This year, as we celebrate half a century of Earth Day, it is past due that the deep silos between queer and ecological movements come down so we may all heal with the land.
Queering Earth Day invites us to collectively define new ecoqueer identities: reconnecting bodies and land, and reweaving the relationships of home. This event responds to previous condemnations of queer pleasure with each other and the earth, lifts up queer exuberance as resistance, and seeks to collectively redefine what it means to be part of the earth. Through Queering Earth Day, we celebrate the leadership of queer and trans black, indigenous, and people of color (QTBIPOC) and members of our community with mental and physical disabilities and illness, to lift up these queer strategies of survival and resilience from the margins. We learn from the work of groups such as Queer Appalachia, Queer Nature, Southerners on New Ground, Interlocking Roots and others who weave narratives of queer rurality, enact solidarity with marginalized communities and follow their leadership, celebrate queer kindships with the non-human world, and imagine queer ecological futures. We ask: in this time of ecological emergency, what strategies of queer resilience are most needed for the collective liberation of all marginalized communities? How do we engage in these collectively across space and culture?
This ecoqueer art event series will take place within the Athens Institute for Contemporary Art. Through this interdisciplinary mixture of poetry, zines, film, and food, our hope is to gather community together to delve into these and other themes:
- Collective liberation of land and bodies
- Personal narratives of food, climate, and environmental justice
- Queer conservation and ecological regeneration in Athens and the Southeast
- Coping strategies for climate despair
- Transness across space and time
- The materiality of non-binary characteristics
- Practices for queer resilience
- New definitions of resilience
- Ecotherapy and neurodivergent resistance with nature
- Queer mapping of bodies and land
- Queer ecological place-making
- Interspecies kinship
- Human as creature
In honor of the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, please join us in celebrating the biological exuberance of this queer earth, honor the legacies of survival and resilience of our LGBTQ history, explore the impact of climate change on our communities, and dream-up together how we build that queer ecological future where all beings survive and thrive.