Painting the arts green: our 5 favourite picks from Resource Library

Environmental Art
Environmental Art at Swarm Gallery, San Francisco. Photo credit: Moe Beitiks.

There’s no doubt that the bond between culture and environmental sustainability is a strong one. Arts and culture organizations have the power to incite a positive public response to ecological sustainability. Arts organizations in Ontario and beyond are integrating innovative ways to cut down on their carbon foot print and establish a greener culture inside and outside their creative walls.

In celebration of Earth Day, here’s a list of our favourite Green Resources from ArtsBuild’s Resource Library that might just inspire your organization’s next green project.

Beyond Green: Toward a Sustainable Art. This compelling book introduces a new generation of international artists who combine the concepts of sustainable design and contemporary art. Paul A. Kay, Chair of Environment and Resource Studies at the University of Waterloo, notes in his review that the book itself is made with paper certified by the Forestry Stewardship Council and its inks are soy-based. He writes that “in addition to the 20-plus pieces described, the book itself and the museum spaces that house the exhibition represent a commitment to ‘green-ness.’” If you’re looking for insight on how to take a creative approach to greening your space, this book should be next on your reading list.
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Going Green on a Nonprofit Budget. We like this presentation so much because it clearly spells out the environmental and financial benefits of switching over to green operations. Plus, donors want to support nonprofit organizations that take a proactive lead on environmental stewardship.
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Artscape Wychwood Barns Green Design. When Artscape imagined the transformation of Wychwood Barns, they envisioned an environmentally sustainable facility. They restored a century old street car repair station, and designated heritage site, into the multi-faceted cultural hub for artists, nonprofits, and other culture groups that it is today. Some ecological sustainable features include geothermal heating, storm water harvesting and re-use system, energy efficient lighting and water-conserving plumbing fixtures. Read more on this unique culture spot’s green story here:

Sustainable and Maintainable: Achieving Two Goals.  As your organizations starts to take infrastructural steps toward energy conservation, it’s good to know what projects to take on and what questions to ask during the process. This article tackles the two sided spectrum of maintaining sustainable buildings as well as focuses on HVAC systems and building automated systems. It also offers some good insights into LEED certification projects.
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Is your arts organization thinking about taking on an energy conservation project? ArtsBuild will be announcing its next energy conservation initiative in just a few weeks, so stay tuned for updates!