Explorations of Now – a unique collaborative project blending art and science for increased community involvement in a climate-changing world
The art collective Kultivator on Öland and Sweden’s most famous contemporary dance company Cullberg have together initiated the Explorations of Now project and invited the Institute for Future Studies. The initiative comes from art to science is new and the diversity of perspectives and audiences are the project’s strength. The initiators and participating parties are all active both in metropolitan areas and in rural areas, small independent actors and large government institutions and all operate in different parts of contemporary art and science.
“With Explorations of Now, we want to collectively formulate the questions we as ecosystems must ask ourselves now. We are in the middle of the present and want to bring together art, dance and research to find a new kind of conversation with the biosphere. Both all life around us and what we embody ourselves. If we can imagine a reciprocity where we create the future together, sustainability becomes a natural part of it, and the change we are facing will be possible”, says Malin Lindmark Vrijman, Kultivator.
Explorations of Now has begun with an exploratory part during the spring, which has mainly taken place through digital meetings and work in different directions due to the current corona virus pandemic.
“Many cultural projects have been canceled this spring due to the pandemic. For this project, to cancel was not an option, it’s just about resetting. Adapting to all possible situations and unforeseen events, in the short and long term, is in the nature of the project. The corona virus began to spread in earnest in Sweden the same week that our project started, but by then we did not know how it would affect us and the project. We still do not know. It has been a challenging time, but a time that has actually tested our own creativity and ability to imagine a different, alternative future. To think new and see what is possible when we put our heads together and take responsibility for each other”, says Stina Dahlström, managing director Cullberg.
In the next phase of Explorations of Now, Kultivator, Cullberg and the Institute for Future Studies will each arrange a meeting place. These will take place on Öland, in Botkyrka and in Stockholm during the year and will be adapted to the current situation. The purpose is to establish places where an audience interested in society, researchers, artists and those involved from various relevant fields can meet and collaborate.
“Based on artistic and scientific processes and based on existential issues, the idea is that the meeting places should explore how we release our collective imagination in order to achieve a sustainable future. We do not have all the answers now and maybe we will not get all the answers during the process. It will be something for the future to develop”, Stina Dahlström continues. In the late summer of 2021, Explorations of Now will finally present a large joint finale in the Stockholm area.
“The finale is not the end but the beginning. We have hopefully landed in inspiring more people to join this movement going forward. We have found ways to collectively imagine a transition to a future which not only adapts to climate change but to a better world to live in for us humans and the biosphere. We will produce an inspiring manual that we hope will help in the work for a sustainable world”, concludes Stina Dahlström.
The UN’s global goals and Agenda 2030 form the basis for Explorations of Now and the project is funded by the Postcode Foundation, Cullberg and the Institute for Future Studies.
“The climate is the great fateful issue of our time and the time to act is now. Despite an increased awareness of the challenges we face, it is difficult for many of us to change habitual behaviors. The
Postcode Foundation is therefore proud to support this project, where researchers, businesses and artists together with the general public create new visions of how we could live together in a more sustainable future”, says Marie Dahllöf, Secretary General of the Swedish Postcode Foundation.
About the participating parties
Kultivator is an art collective based on Öland. The interdisciplinary activities include art projects and agriculture that meet social projects and environmental actions, as well as an international residency and exhibition program. In the residency activities, about 80 artists have participated over the years together with about 30 cows, chickens, ducks, sheep and horses. The art collective is led by Mathieu and Malin Vrijman, who in 2017 were awarded the Dynamo Scholarship by the Visual Artists’ Fund.
Cullberg is a national and international repertoire company, part of Riksteatern, the Swedish National Touring Theatre, based in Botkyrka outside Stockholm. Cullberg’s contemporary dance meets a large audience in Sweden and abroad. Together with leading choreographers and artistic teams from around the world, we explore ideas on how dance can be defined, produced and presented. The exploratory work is the basis for the company, which is constantly at the center of the international dance scene.
The Institute for Future Studies is a government research foundation where researchers from various social science disciplines conduct research on issues that are of great importance for how we shape our future society. The business is based on the 1960s insights that we humans in many ways affect not only our own lives but also future generations. All research conducted here must have a long-term perspective and clear relevance for our future. The subjects studied are changed regularly, which creates a dynamic research environment. Here, researchers from a number of different social science disciplines are mixed and collaborate, today including sociology, philosophy, political science, business administration and psychology.
The Postcode Foundation
The Postcode Foundation is a beneficiary of the Swedish Postcode Lottery and mediates time-limited support for projects that contribute to a positive change in society. The foundation supports non-profit organizations in Sweden and internationally that actively contribute to the fulfillment of the global goals and to create positive change through concrete efforts. The projects are about everything from human rights to environmental issues as well as about social change and education through sports and investments in culture. Since 2007, 1.5 billion has been allocated to over 600 projects.
ILES PR, Daniel Pérez Wenger, firstname.lastname@example.org 073-996 11 46
Explorations of Now
Stina Dahlström, Managing Director, Cullberg, email@example.com, 070-637 59 44
Folke Tersman, Ställföreträdande VD, Institutet för framtidsstudier, firstname.lastname@example.org, 08-402 12 22
Malin Lindmark Vrijman, Kultivator, email@example.com, 070-885 46 39