Creative Students and Artists in Eugene: New Visions for a Healthy Planet
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This project explores current artist participation in the environmental movement. Eco-artists create functional artwork using concepts from the fields of art and ecology to analyze the impacts of industrial development, consumption and waste on our contemporary landscape. Because interdisciplinary work is well suited to community efforts for environmental vitality, the environment and reuse exhibit took place during the University of Oregon's 2007 Public Interest Environmental Law Conference. As a partner in sustainability work, eco-art has the potential to create alternative environmental and cultural views through new concepts for materials use. Based on the knowledge and consideration of our relationship with nature, eco-art helps us recontextualize the environmental movement's three r's-reuse, reduce, recycle. The term eco-art is short for ecological art and the movement is connected to the growing presence of 400 create reuse centers around the globe. These centers receive and sort donated scrap and waste materials and provide low cost public access and education for the use of these materials. Creative reuse centers also provide substantial public education in reuse practices and the arts are valuable partners in global sustainability work. Eco-art work is rooted in science, socio-economic politics and environmental change. It is not yet clearly defined as separate from the Environmental Art movement, which has been an active partner for the environmental movement since the nineteen sixties.