Oika’s Into the Artmosphere program is a traveling conversation series to introduce the principles and practices of ecological intelligence to artists. The program begins with an informal gathering of artists (with a scientist) who seek to elevate their art into the domain of cultural and ecological impact.
The initial conversation invites artists to level-up their awareness of nature and their understandings of science. We do this first through an exploration of the natural history of art. Retelling the story of art as natural history is about reframing the inherent sensitivity and creativity of the artist into the context of our ongoing social and ecological crises. This perspective requires artists to get serious about channeling their artistic capacities to better communicate between the worlds of nature and culture.
Artists with higher affinities for eco-cultural communication may eventually expand the conversation into a longer format course. This may include first-person Oika practice sessions in nature, online interaction, access to a special Oika “game board” and future collaborative art projects. We let the artists create the path.
Oika confers an awakening of the implicit capacity for ecological intelligence within some artists. It won’t be for everyone. While some artists may be content to forever express idiosyncratic ego through their talents, this program is for artists who harbor a latent sensitivity, and perhaps even a radical affection for nature. This is for artists who seek to understand their gift in a deeper and more expansive way.
Thus, a primary goal of Oika is to apply that gift within a professional eco-cultural healing practice. We believe this personal process is the first part of a bigger, planetary transformation that is currently happening, and will need to happen if humanity is to continue to flourish on Earth.
The format of Into the Artmosphere will vary according to the hosting context. For example:
Art Galleries: Oika teams up with a gallery to curate small groups of artists that participate over a specified duration of days to weeks. In this scenario we may work with these artists locally to support and produce a collective show. See A Surfer's Guide to the Universe as an example.
Art Residencies: Oika sets up shop on the periphery of an ongoing art residency to offer an optional, add-on opportunity for artists already in residence. In this scenario we adopt the same program priorities and specifics of the host residency.
Educational Institutions: Oika offers a one-time lecture, seminar or workshop and then adopts the priorities of the hosting program. Depending on interest, we may work with artists individually or collectively.
Art/Cultural Festivals: Oika offers its educational program in the lead-up to the festival and organizes a series of outputs or a show that fits within the festival’s theme. Or we may work with and support artists on an individual basis.
Artist/Maker Collaboratives: Oika convenes an informal, bespoke cohort of local artists and organizes a group show or opening event. See A Surfer's Guide to the Universe as an example.
Direct support for aligned artists:
Artists who wish to explore Oika more deeply may expand the conversation through individualized consultation and practices. These arrangements may include financial artist support. In each case, we’ll design an adaptable program that can serve artist and/or venue-specific scenarios.