Before discussing sustainable art, it is best to explain what sustainability is. The UCLA sustainability committee defines it as "the physical development and institutional operating practices that meet the needs of present users without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs, particularly with regard to use and waste of natural resources". Sustainable art is essentially utilizing materials that do not compromise the environment. This may be done by re-purposing fabric, using leaves and twigs, or even using beads from old, unused jewelry. The main reason for doing this is, like the poster states, "there is no planet b". It is our responsibility to try our best to be as sustainable as possible for ourselves and generations to come. We must practice sustainability in all aspects of our lives, including within our creative projects.
In our past sessions, some of our workshops were 100% sustainable and for some we needed to purchase extra supplies. This cycle, our goal is to make ALL of our art completely sustainable, utilizing the various types of non-monetary donations we've received from old clothing and jewelry to trims, while bringing in natural elements such as flowers, twigs, and leaves. The practice began with our one-off Sustainable Papermaking workshop and has now continued into our summer cycle. Even though we have only just completed our second workshop, we have been sticking to it! In the first week we made dream-catchers using twigs and re-purposed trims. In our most recent session we made God's eyes using more donated trims and old beads. The concept is a little similar to dream-catching but, we decided to mix things up. So, some participants used chopsticks and others used Popsicle sticks along with the twigs we used the previous week. To find pictures of the results from our dream-catching workshop, check out our Instagram. To find more ideas for sustainable artwork be sure to check out our Pinterest board. We invite you try some of the ideas out!