Worlds of Water

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A woman and boy looking at patchwork of watercolor sketches

Close-up of watercolors

Installation picture of watercolors

Close-up of watercolors

Close-up shows typed words

Photos from Naoe Suzuki’s Flow: An Art Project Investigating Our Relationship With Water

Photo Credit: Images 1 and 2 – Emily Edwards; Images 3, 4 and 5 – Naoe Suzuki

 

Rosalyn Driscoll, Sculptor and Photographer ● www.rosalyndriscoll.com

Sarah Bliss, Artist and Filmmaker • www.sarahblissart.com

Note: At the panel, a list of water resources was shared as a Google document that anyone can add to: docs.google.com/document/d/18hNtfkjJMchY-uFCd27tcODbTgt1SwqrA0h6ZLoBWjk/edit.

Out of love and concern, artists of all disciplines are responding in diverse ways to water and its properties and politics. Inspired by the connective nature of water, this roundtable invited visual and performing artists, activists, musicians, poets, scientists, scholars and anyone working with the phenomena of water – as subject, material, metaphor, behavior or resource – to connect with each other. The purpose was to share work and ideas; create new synergies, collaborations and exchanges; expand and challenge thinking and methodology; discover new ways of working; find sources for funding; and learn strategies to reach new audiences.

The Round Table included short presentations by each of the 32 participants. They spoke about their work 1½ hours with then left for discussion and questions.

The artists assembled included a painter who uses water in her process, an urban hydrologist who paints water, a performance artist working along rivers, an artist researching irrigation systems, coastal artists working with tides and waves, an installation artist who projects moving water onto buildings and an artist working with the legal rights of springs. The diversity of our assemblage proved that the ubiquity, universality and many manifestations of water provide endless avenues for artwork of all kinds that are unique yet related through the common element of water. Everyone was passionate about water and the need for its conservation and celebration and conscious of their roles as educators, advocates and activists. Individual artists made specific connections with each other at the end, and we circulated an email list, through which participants have, since then, sent notices of water-related events. As noted above, a list of water resources was shared as a Google document anyone can add to: docs.google.com/document/d/18hNtfkjJMchY-uFCd27tcODbTgt1SwqrA0h6ZLoBWjk/edit.

The round table was organized and run by Rosalyn Driscoll, a sculptor whose inquiry into water led to the co-creation of Moving Water, a participatory art eventin London, in 2014 and a current collaboration on springs with ecologist Larry Stevens, director of Springs Stewardship Institute in Arizona. The co-organizer, filmmaker Sarah Bliss, was unable to attend the Conference.