2024 Morris + PPEH Call for Ecotopian Tools for Multispecies Flourishing

March 1, 2024
Ongoing Applications
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In cooperation with the Morris Arboretum & Gardens, the Penn Program for Environmental Humanities invites you to participate in a project to create Ecotopian Tools for Multispecies Flourishing. Successful proposals for Ecotopian Tools will be explored in designer-led public workshops at Morris in spring 2024 and will be documented in a print catalog and also included in the expanding digital “living archive,” the Ecotopian Toolkit for the Anthropocene.

Proposals will introduce “ecotopian” tools, whether conceptual or realized, that might be used by visitors and inhabitants of Morris to support diverse, multi-species communities, including humans, and to connect them to other places of refuge amidst the ongoing crisis of extinction fueled by habitat loss, climate change, and other Anthropocene woes. By “multispecies” we refer to “the complexity of living, learning, and becoming with/alongside/through other planetary beings and cosmological phenomena” (Khan and Bowen). Inspired by utopian writing and projects across cultures, traditions, and times, the word “ecotopian” is borrowed from Ernest Callenbach’s 1975 novel, Ecotopia. This ongoing initiative to craft and share ecotopian tools across the Delaware Valley takes a utopian approach to ecological crisis as a way to confront the feelings of helplessness and apathy that often arise in the face of global warming and the ongoing sixth mass extinction event.

Each Toolmaker will be awarded micro-grants of $2000 to allow for the proposed Ecotopian Tool to be explored, prototyped, and possibly built, distributed, and used at Morris and connected communities, including the main campus of the University of Pennsylvania. Throughout early spring 2024, toolmakers will work with Morris and PPEH to lead a series of participatory public workshops featuring their Tool and its applications.

For more information, click here.

To submit proposals, click here.

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