Climate action through art.
This year, for the first time, the Canadian branch of The Climate Reality Project participated in the international project entitled “When is Now” to raise awareness regarding the climate emergency, through original visual and literary creations.
The project is an impassioned appeal to head the urgency
to imagine a sustainable world and express solidarity with the populations most
vulnerable to climate change. Indeed, the effects of the climate crisis are already being felt and art is a powerful tool in the sharing of these stories.
With the goal of creating space for grassroots voices through artistic expression and challenge political decision makers, the project includes the creation of public murals on three continents, a transnational series of poetry workshops and an installation at COP27. The project is an impassioned appeal to head the urgency to imagine a sustainable world and express solidarity with the populations most vulnerable to climate change. Indeed, the effects of the climate crisis are already being felt and art is a powerful tool in the sharing of these stories.
The originality and strength of the “When is Now” campaign lies in its use of art, poetry and activism to tell personal stories with universal reach in order to talk about climate change. Thanks to this campaign, creativity and activism come together in the framework of a planetary collaboration and create a space for exchange and dialogue in order to provide solutions to the issues related to the climate crisis.
The aim of the project is also to help emphasize the need for world leaders to tackle the problems and damage linked to climate change that affects the most vulnerable countries. Using art to connect communities, the campaign aims to engage international leaders, who will meet at the 27th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP27) later this year in Sharm el-Sheikh in Egypt.
A Global Collaboration
The When is Now campaign is the result of collaborative work between The Climate Reality Project offices in Africa, Canada and the Philippines. Through art, the three branches have managed to build creative dialogues with universal resonance and relationships strengthened by solidarity and compassion. The When Is Now campaign is also supported by the Climate Vulnerability Forum, the Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities (ICSC) and The Agam Agenda.
When is Now includes various workshops such as those of Poets for Climate, a collaborative project between the branches Climate Dialogues and Climate Reality Project, which aims to provide a platform to express the urgency to act in the face of the climate crisis, highlighting its consequences in different regions of the world and proposing solutions.
These virtual workshops focused on the writing of short but eloquent poems on the relationship that man has with certain bioregions such as forests, deserts and arid zones, islands and coastal zones, tundra and mountains or fresh water again. Inspired by Poets for Science, a collection of poetry and movement created in collaboration with poet and essayist Jane Hirshfield, which explores the connections between poetry and science, Poets for Climate brings together the words and perspectives of artists in the Philippines, in Canada and Africa to create pebble poems consisting of only three or four lines.
This short poetic form is inspired by a teaching module developed by the famous Filipino poet Marjorie Evasco. These poems aim to capture the imagination of leaders and help amplify the movement for climate action and justice around the world. Veteran poets served as mentors during these workshops, including Nigerian activist and writer Nnimmo Bassey, known for his commitment to environmental protection and climate justice. In Canada, Joel De Villiers (alias Spaceman Dela), Charlene Winger Jones, Hayley Sales and Clémence Roy-Darisse contributed to these co-creation workshops, which brought together poets, poetesses, slammers and writers from all over the world.
Poets for Climate: Pebble Poem Workshop Series.
These virtual workshops will focus on writing short but compelling poems about humanity’s relationship with places defined as shared bioregions of our earth. Here are the indicative schedule of the workshops:
04 August 2022
Deserts and Arid Places
11 August 2022
18 August 2022
Alpine and Highlands/ Grasslands
25 August 2022
01 September 2022
Charlene Winger Jones
Charlene, Climate Reality Leader trained in Minneapolis in 2019, is a Water Walker from Saukiing Anishinaabekiing in Canada. Charlene's teachings and commitment to protect the water as the giver of life, and to protect our planet for all generations has been an inspiration for many. Charlene’s community is facing a water crisis, one that is making clean drinking water hard to come by and forcing many to abandon long-held traditions, like ice fishing. She walked for four years with other women, other men, carrying the eagle staff and copper pot for around 6,000 kilometers to create an awareness about the water.
To learn more about Charlene's journey: https://www.climaterealityproject.org/blog/climate-stories-water-precious-resource
Clémence Roy-Darisse is an emerging artist in love with words. First trained to play them, (Theater School of Cégep de Saint-Hyacinthe, Danielle Fichaud, Bachelor of Theater at the University of Ottawa) she took part in several productions: Testament (Vickie Gendreau), Antioche (Sarah Berthiaume), Agatha (Marguerite Duras) then tackled directing before discovering a passion for creating original works. She first wrote spoken words (Mange moi; I have 1200 imaginary friends), then plays (Overbrook the musical; Racines; Profil, Laurence). Clémence is now pursuing her career as an actress, comedian and director, in addition to co-directing the theatrical poetry collective Les Frivoles with Emmanuelle Gingras. She is currently starting her master's degree in ecological theatre. Eco-concerned, Clémence seeks to combine her passion for social justice and the environment through the substance and form of her works.
From the Canadian melting pot of cultures and flavours that we know as Montreal, an artist by the name of Spaceman Dela emerges. Growing up in a family of musicians, Dela has been surrounded by the impactful sounds of various genres and influences from a young age. Recognizing his unique abilities to write and compose lyrics, weave together melodies, and dive deep into a wide array of rhythms and soundscapes, Spaceman put the pen to the pad and started creating. Bridging the gap between an old school, soulful feel and a new age approach and creative outlook, this rising star’s vibrant presence and strong lyrical core are hard to miss. Providing what some would call “cosmic poetry for the soul" and portraying his most human emotions and otherworldly curiosities in every piece of music, Spaceman Dela has set out to break the mould and bring something fresh to the table with every release. With an emphasis placed on substantial content matter and high quality production, this new act is sure to stand out and get new listeners hooked.
Hayley Sales is an American-Canadian singer-songwriter, actress and trained Climate Reality Leader. Sales' debut album Sunseed was released on June 19, 2007; songs "Keep Drivin" and "What You Want" reached #11 on the Japan Hot 100 and #45 on the Canadian Hot 100, respectively. Her second album, When the Bird Became a Book, was released on June 21, 2010, and includes duets with musicians G. Love and Donavon Frankenreiter. Sales has been a major advocate of oceanic preservation since the beginning of her career. While living in Florida, Sales performed numerous concerts to benefit The Sea Turtle Preservation. Most recently Sales contributed to the Surfrider Foundation by collaborating with O'Neill Surf Company to create a charity T-shirt, all proceeds going towards oceanic preservation. In 2010, the song "Not In His Garden," featuring Donavon Frankenreiter, was featured on David Suzuki's "Playlist For the Planet. Additional charity work includes partaking in a documentary for the W Network (CAN), "Making Waves." The film followed her across the country as she interviewed locals who had started non-profits in their cities/towns. During this experience, Sales wrote and released the song "Lullaby (Change The World)," all proceeds going towards the Canadian-based charity, ChildHaven. While in Los Angeles, Sales is very active with the non-profit, Musicians On Call, a volunteer based program that brings music to children in hospitals. She has also performed several times in Cocoa Beach at the Slater Brothers (Kelly Slater-World Winning Surfer) Invitational, a benefit to raise awareness of skin cancer.
The creations of Moule, Brouillons_Sam19, Gallium, Tshoko, Louis Letters and La barquette are the expression of the urgency of protecting the climate and imagining a sustainable world.
Moule is a multidisciplinary artist who has been living in Montreal for four years. Feminism, social justice, ecofeminism, gender and sexuality issues, her characters are communicators of socially important messages. Sometimes divine and fantastical, sometimes sweet and angry, her illustrations speak, cry, represent and fight for women and people oppressed by the patriarchal system.
La barquette is an emerging artist from Reunion Island. Her multiple artistic researches are mainly centered on the questions of gender, the relation to oneself/others, to plural feminisms as well as on her relation to the omnipresent nature since her most tender childhood. She tries, through her creations, to retranscribe graphically the bands of colors and joys which are essential for her to feel more at ease in her daily life. .
Louis Letters is passionate about typography and lettering. Known for his unique style that he has developed over the years, letters are present in most of his creations.
Sam'19 is a self-taught, multidisciplinary artist who has been living in Montreal for almost nine years. A sociologist by training, she expresses her social and political convictions through what she calls "little drafts". Each of her creations highlights her own emotions and aims to raise awareness and de-stigmatize subjects that are particularly close to her heart, such as mental health, feminism in all its forms, sexual emancipation of women, social inequalities and employment justice...
Tshoko illustrator based in Montreal. Lulled by fantasy novels, comic books and science fiction movies, she has always preferred strong and combative heroines. Today, she pays particular attention to highlighting people who are less, or poorly, represented in her illustrations. She believes that the female imagery of Western societies is undervalued and internalized. Her work is about reclaiming this "girl" culture. Everyone should have diverse representations to identify with.