In This Issue

Open only to WEAD listing artists and members, each Portfolio is curated by the Editorial Committee to showcase artists whose work reflects diverse approaches to the issue’s theme.


Jane Ingram Allen
Jackie Brookner
Kira Corser
Char Evans
Beth Grossman
Jessica Levine
Lori Lipsman
Marne Lucas & Jacob Pander
Anna Olsson
Vicki Jo Sowell
Riva Weinstein 




This temporal installation was part of a residency at Nan Uua University, Taiwan, working in the Department of Architecture and Landscape Design (Environmental Art) with Dr. Ted Wei, Dean, and Dr. Kelly Kuo, Chair.  After I taught the department’s students how to make paper from local plant waste and factory pulp, we worked together to hand make 300 prayer flags destined to symbolically heal a deep cut in university land caused by road construction.  The flags were dyed in five traditional colors that “bring the world into balance”–blue/sky, white/clouds, red/fire, green/water and yellow/earth.  A Feng Shui Master guided us to “reconnect both sides of the ridge” using five color threads under the earth and on the roots of two young trees newly planted on each side of the road. The final healing gesture was to suspend the students’ prayer flags high on natural ropes from tall trees on both sides of the road. All materials stay in place until they biodegrade.




The goal of The Fargo Project in Fargo, ND, is to transform an 18-acre functioning storm water detention basin into a multifunctional neighborhood commons through a deep and sustained community process. The pilot project, called World Garden Commons, is at one of Fargo’s largest and most visible basins. Because the basin must continue to collect storm water, part of the challenge is designing other uses compatible with the infrastructure function.  World Garden Commons is in an underserved neighborhood with low and moderate-income residents, including many of Fargo’s “New American” population, refugees from 20 different nations such as Bhutan, Somalia, Sudan, Liberia, Iraq, and Bosnia as well as members of its Native American community. The project is shaped to engage these communities to have a major role in transforming their neighborhood. Many wanted a place to be immersed in nature and revitalized by it.  The plan that resulted from months of outreach and community design calls for a multifunctional commons with 17 acres of restored native prairie with walking trails, natural play areas, an orchard, an amphitheater, an interactive listening sculpture, and places for contemplation, gatherings and cultural festivals, and for enjoying water. The native prairie grasses will help rebuild the soils and filter water.  Encouraging a positive connection with water is extremely important in Fargo, where The Red River’s frequent flooding has deeply affected cultural attitudes toward water and the river.  Water is all too often seen as the enemy. A community garden has been started in the area around the basin, with a solar greenhouse coming soon.


Fish skeleton Sea changes Kira (1)
Sea Changes ACT is a series on Climate Change, Plastic Pollution and Overfishing with scientists and artists

Scientists and legislators say we need the arts to build resilience. I am working on two community-based projects that mix fine art with activism.  I recently finished a Music Video with Erik Scott (former bass player for Alice Cooper) and presented several installations at the California Climate Change Adaptation Forum. One on Peace and Social Justice – see Art is the Next Peace: Connecting Communities



Created at the Bamboo centre in Auroville, India, this project resulted from the creative collaboration of over 100 people– local and international artistes and the local community, over three months. Balasundaram Ponnusamy and the Kolam Artists of the Bamboo Centre, Mohanam Cultural Centre, Yatra Srinivassan of Yatra Multimedia, Catherine Starostenko, Gaia Harvey Jackson of StampCollective and Joe Iredale of HalfCut, Reda Radi, Cosmo Brahman, AuroTejas Hemsell and her dance troupe, Einat Ran, Kwizera Samuel, Gosha Bury, Axel Carlstrand, Sri Kolari, Romain Timmers, Madhu Jayamoorthi, Balazs Virag, Balazs.

DZINE TRIP article:

INHABITAT article:

Conscious Life News article:

‘The Hindu’ – India’s National Newspaper:

SHORT VIDEOS with music by Zilverzurf and Moby:

Time-lapse video:


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Table Talk is an ongoing dialogue project using the Golden Rule as a keystone question. Nearly every world religion has a version of the Golden Rule as its primary principle, yet we forget to live by it. What does it mean to “Love your neighbor as yourself?”  If we lived by this ancient tenet, how could our world be changed politically and socially? What would our relationship to our environment be?  How could we re-envision the structure of our community and family lives? What is the Golden Rule you could live by?



RiverWise Park, on the Greenbrier River, Caldwell, WV, 2006.

Located in River Wise Park on the Greenbrier River in Caldwell, this is a rich natural history of the Greenbrier River Watershed. The pattern represents the whole ribbon of the River in scale.  Hundreds of local and international folks pitched in. The path is richly inscribed with drawings, poems and personal stories. The park has become a local institution, an organizing principle to express appreciation to the River, and an essential part of community life that enriches and inspires us.




free art: cart is part of the free art project, which gives away one-of-a kind, signed artworks throughout the greater community of San Diego. Through the gift of art, the community at-large becomes physically connected to the art community and visa-versa. Dialogues begin and awareness increases, creating a positive, joyous, and uplifting experience for the giver and the receiver.


Incident Energy


The artists installed infrared video stills in various Oregon locations for this 2013 project, Incident Energy Viewed through the surreal beauty of infrared surveillance technology, the project presents investigations on humanity’s relationship to nature, technology and cultural expression and transports viewers into an “otherworld” depicted in scenes of community events and emotions.  Associated with military, border, or aerial surveillance, technology continues to change cultural and human interaction in practical, philosophical and creative ways.  By visualizing the surreal beauty of changing heat-signatures radiating from the corporeal and inanimate, this work suggests that we are truly beings of light.



“I’m like Black Tom Petty – no one wants to know me.

I’m like Black Tom Petty – no one wants to know me is a linen tapestry created by the artist in Sweden.  She writes, “When it comes to a communities care and willingness to accept refugees, the answer is always a lack of resources. But in terms of a communities willingness to shut out and reject refugees there are always endless resources. I wonder if there is any community that would welcome me if I had to escape?”



When the abandoned gas station that had been owned by our long-time neighbor Big Daddy Green burned down, the City of Emeryville asked us what should be done on the site. Big Daddy’s Complete Rejuvenating Community Garden is the result, the name is a riff on Mr. Green’s original business.

The garden provides two dozen raised-bed gardening boxes to community members within close distance in Emeryville and Oakland. 

Riva Weinstein


Walking in Circles of Art/Life/Nature (Photo credit: Linda Byrne) Performance (Moving Sculpture), Hudson Highlands Nature Museum, April 29, 2014

The artist calls Walking in Circles of Art/Life/Nature a “moving sculpture”.  It was performed at Hudson Highlands Nature Museum in April 2014.  She explains:  “An intimate community is created by walking in an invisible circle for 18 minutes in a field. Together we create a circle of connection, a meditation on the cycles of art, life and nature. The location is noteworthy: the Hudson Highlands were the origin point for landmark environmental legislation concerning aesthetic impacts of large projects on the land.” (Photo credit: Linda Byrne)