Ecology and Society Ecology and Society
E&S Home > Vol. 22, Iss. 2 > Art. 17 > Abstract Open Access Publishing 
The imaginary worlds of sustainability: observations from an interactive art installation

Roy Bendor, Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands
David Maggs, University of British Columbia, Canada
Rachel Peake
John Robinson, University of Toronto, Canada
Steve Williams, University of British Columbia, Canada

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5751/ES-09240-220217

Full Text: HTML   
Download Citation


Abstract

We report on preliminary results from a public engagement project based on a procedural approach to sustainability. The project centered on an interactive art installation that comprised a live actor, an immersive soundscape featuring a handful of different characters, an interactive touch-table, and four interactive rooms within which participants wandered, partially guided by a narrative through-line, yet at the same time left to make sense of any larger meanings on their own. The installation was designed to experiment with two propositions: (1) that there is value in public engagement with sustainability based on the exploration and articulation of deeply held beliefs about the world—the worldviews, values, and presuppositions that mediate perception and action; (2) that there is value in replacing the infocentric tendency of most public engagement on sustainability with an approach premised in aesthetics and experiential resonance. Following the installation’s two-week pilot run, our preliminary results indicated that the majority of participants found the experience both resonant and thought provoking, and were mostly willing to critically engage with their pre-existing notions of sustainability.

Key words

art; cultural dimensions of sustainability; imagination; ontological agency; social constructivism

Copyright © 2017 by the author(s). Published here under license by The Resilience Alliance. This article  is under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.  You may share and adapt the work for noncommercial purposes provided the original author and source are credited, you indicate whether any changes were made, and you include a link to the license.

Top
Ecology and Society. ISSN: 1708-3087