OPEN CALL: LCCA Summer School “Care of Earth, Care of People"

Call for applications for the annual LCCA Summer School “Care of Earth, Care of People. System Change for an Inclusive and Sustainable Environments” in Smiltene, Latvia, 4 – 11 August 2023.

Application deadline: 25 June

The Summer School is open to early career artists, art historians, humanities and social science scholars, curators and cultural studies researchers. MA and PhD students are particularly encouraged to apply.  

How can changes in the strengthening of a diverse and inclusive society influence awareness, responsibility and engagement in the current environmental and climate crisis? How can we shape our own environments and communities that embrace a more harmonious and holistic relationship between people and nature? And what role can contemporary art and culture play in this?

This year LCCA Summer School programme is focused on inclusive and sustainable contemporary culture and environment, thinking of them as interconnected and mutually supportive. It will cover topics such as the impact of climate change in our lives, social and environmental justice and responsibility, eco-friendly lifestyles and conservation of natural resources, methods for mental health and well-being and socially engaged artistic practices, and it will offer interdisciplinary perspectives and approaches on how to think about them. 

The Summer School will take place in Smiltene, a town in the Vidzeme region in northern Latvia, combining lectures, workshops, guided tours, discussions and creative practices aimed at fostering a collaborative and inclusive environment. Speakers holding workshops and lectures are environmental researcher Jānis Brizga, curator and researcher Krzysztof Candrowicz, social anthropologist Agita Lūse, architect and urbanist Līva Kreislere, researcher in climate politics and populism Baiba Witajewska-Baltvilka and others. The curators of the Summer School programme are Ieva Astahovska and Elza Medne. Sustainability and social inclusion consultants: Liene Brizga-Kalniņa and Ieva Rosne.

The LCCA Summer School is organised in collaboration with Smiltene Municipality, the Art Academy of Latvia and ISSP, a platform for contemporary photography, art and education.

Accessibility, inclusion and diversity issues are becoming increasingly topical in our society and art, and cultural institutions are not only looking for new ways to make their programmes accessible to people with different needs, including people with disabilities, but also how they can create new understandings of our commonality and well-being for communities of all kinds. Similarly, sustainability issues are particularly critical today because of the global ecological crisis, which is rooted in the embeddedness of unsustainability in our everyday lives. These issues are coming to the fore in all sectors, requiring us to look for interconnections and cooperation between different spheres, cultural, social, economic, political and ecological processes.

The LCCA Summer School will give participants the opportunity to explore and discuss current approaches to reducing ecological footprints, conserving natural resources, sustainable practices and their promotion in different sectors, the interlinkages between environmental sustainability and social inclusion, ensuring equal access to resources and opportunities for all people, regardless of their background or abilities. Participants will also discuss inclusive institution-building practices, systemic change and the promotion of diversity and inclusion in different contexts, among them education, governance and public services, as well as the link between mental health and environmental sustainability.

The Summer School is part of the project “Islands of Kinship: A Collective Manual for Sustainable and Inclusive Art Institutions”, supported by the Creative Europe Programme.

Participation in the Summer School is free of charge; however, participants must cover partial accommodation and catering costs of 100 EUR.

To apply to participate, please fill out the application form and enclosing a motivation letter:

Application deadline: 25 June 2023. We will respond to applicants by 29 June.

For any questions regarding application, please contact Mārīte Lempa:

Image: Līga Spunde, digital drawing from the project “Bulletproof Glass Protecting Serenity”, 2021.

The Summer School is part of the international project Islands of Kinship: A Collective Manual for Sustainable and Inclusive Art Institutions, co-funded by the European Union and Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Latvia.

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