Winter Solstice Newsletter 2020

Our latest quarterly newsletter, planned around the solstices and equinoxes of the year, has just been sent out. If you missed it, you can have a read through below to see what we’ve been up to in 2020, and what’s being planned for 2021.

To sign up for future newsletters, go here. If you’re already on our mailing list, do check your spam filters if you don’t see it.

Winter Solstice newsletter 2020

Winter solstice, the darkest night of the year, is a time of feasting and celebration, the perfect moment for us to are with you the things we are celebrating at Climate Museum UK and the seeds we have been sowing to germinate in the new year. We hope it brings you inspiration!

Looking back at 2020

We kicked off 2020 with lots of activities, including:

  • Activist Museum Award supported by University of Leicester, an enquiry into the links between climate and colonial histories, and exploring ideas for an ‘eco lens’ on digital cultural collections. 
    See more.
  • Royal Academy Eco Visionaries exhibition – participatory workshop to create an Earth First city, and a pop-up installation of our collections.
  • Hayward Gallery Among the Trees exhibition – training workshops for teachers, and workshop for three primary schools, linking climate and trees.
  • Kings College London – a programme in response to the ‘Lost Girl’ exhibition, including a training unit for the MA in Arts Management, a creative workshop for public visitors, and a half-day workshop as part of a conference.
  • Kirklees Declares – our Print It Yourself display was in a pop-up shop in Huddersfield with a programme of activities to explore the Earth crisis.

Then Covid-19 came along in March and lots of planned events were cancelled. We took some time to reflect on our strategy, and used our application to the Prize for Reimagining Museums for Climate Action to help this. We envisaged ourselves as a ‘mychorrizal museum’, a distributed network of associates and climate museums everywhere.

We developed our brand design, helped by graphic designer Joey McAleese. Now, all our associates have access to a Design Playbook. This branding was applied to our Print It Yourself exhibition, which appeared in Innsbruck for the International Nature Festival in October. We are also welcoming internships and placements, with Eleanor Ross from Central Saint Martins currently joining us for her year in industry to develop some 3D elements for this exhibition.

Lots of our activity went online, including around 40 virtual talks and workshops, and more to come, as we’ll be running lots of online workshops for Lewisham residents.

Get involved in our digital projects

These are some of the digital projects we’re running. Get involved by following us in TwitterFacebook or our blog and sharing your posts with us.

  • #TimeToMend – creative acts of mending during lockdown. See more
  • #ActsOfTreeKindness – a week of Tree Kindness during the Urban Tree Festival.
  • #BigGreenDraw – this year’s drawing festival focused on climate, so we had to take part. We produced weekly challenges, and ran an event ‘What can drawing do for the climate?.’
  • #EverydayEcocide – collecting incidents of eco-blindness & denial in media & culture.
  • #ExtremeWeatherStories – collect experiences of people in the frontline of climate breakdown. See this for more
  • #ClimateBooks – inviting you to write reviews of books, shared on our blog. Read our latest review of Sand Talk by Sara Sarf.

Creative Climate Workshops for Lewisham

Supported by Lewisham Local, we are running a series of free workshops in January and February for people in the London Borough of Lewisham. These are at specific times for different audiences and ages, and individuals can book directly onto them. 

Workshop themes are: Future Archaeology Lab, Acts of River Kindness, Climate Museum at Home, Acts of Tree Kindness and Creative Writing to Explore the Earth Crisis.

For dates, theme details and how to book see here.

We can also organise bespoke sessions for Lewisham-based groups, so we’d be grateful if you can share this opportunity with any Lewisham folk you know.

More planned projects for 2021

  • Young Associates group for 16 to 25 year olds to lead their own programmes in their own localities and benefit from mutual support and mentorship.
  • Future Us: a narrative workshop for young people to meet their future selves, future objects and to imagine hybrid, planet-friendly careers and lives.
  • Climate Museum UK in a temporary space on a high street, during Lewisham’s climate-themed Borough of Culture programme.
  • Training & consultancy for museums, working with them to put an Eco Lens on Things in their collections, and creating trails around our Print It Yourself display.
  • Running a course in environmental creative education for arts practitioners and gallery workers from Poland.

Want to get more involved?

Does all this inspire you? We have a distributed model, where associates build their own collections and activities in their area. This helps us have maximum reach and relevance to localities, while reducing our footprint.

We actively seek the involvement of creative planet-kind activators who can bring diverse perspectives and practices to our team. 

Find out how to get more involved here and find out more about our growing team of collaborators here: Who Are We?

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