In an article on the growing cohousing movement, National Geographic magazine interviewed Still Water Co-Director Joline Blais about her research on these “living laboratories for sustainability.” Blais spoke to the sharing economy at the heart of Belfast Cohousing & Ecovillage, an intentional community on the coast of Maine founded by people seeking a greater connection with the environment and each other.
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It’s hard to articulate ecological values with a vocabulary inherited from the industrial age. The Lexicon of Sustainability, an exhibition co-curated by Dan Dixon and Still Water’s Joline Blais, aims to change that. Read the rest of this entry »
Many of us have important relationships with animals, be they the beloved family dog or the meddlesome raccoon that keeps getting into the garbage.
But what about plants? Their relationships to humans may be much less visible in popular media, if it’s conscious at all. Yet some people’s connections to a particular medicinal herb, houseplant, or tree have “deep roots.”
The Belfast Cohousing & Ecovillage is featured on Ron Beard’s live call-in show Talk of the Towns on radio station WERU on the 25th of January.
Still Water Co-Directors Joline Blais and Jon Ippolito are partners in building this innovative community, whose net-zero energy homes and consensus governance aim to be a model for sustainable development.
A surge in new members this summer and fall has put Belfast Cohousing & Ecovillage in position to build its Common House and complete its ambitious project to build a sustainable community on the coast of Maine.
According to Streetsblog Los Angeles‘ Sahra Sulaiman, Still Water Fellows Vanessa Vobis, Craig Dietrich, and collaborators are “saving the world, one garden at a time.” Their project LA Green Grounds continues to dig up both lawns and publicity on its mission to turn Los Angelenos into gardeners.
Figure 1. Vanessa Vobis, Crystal World (2008), Legion Arts-CSPS, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, USA
|Figure 2. Vanessa Vobis, Mars Attacks Fragonard (2009), (106) Gallery, Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA||
Figure 3. Julian Epps, The Cave (2008), FreesePop, Bangor, Maine, USA
Still Water Fellow Vanessa Vobis has a history of combining installation art and ecology. In 2007 she filled sandwich bags with tap water and after a couple weeks they burst with algae growth under natural light. This discovery led to her MFA thesis show, Nitpickers, at Legion Arts-CSPS in 2008 (Figure 1) and gallery shows including Mars Attacks Fragonard at Grand Rapids’ (106) Gallery (Figure 2). Later in 2008 she taught the inaugural installation class at UMaine’s Intermedia graduate program, prompting a student show at Bangor’s historic Freeses Building featuring a community theme and materials including pancakes, wheatgrass, and projections inspired by bioluminescence (Figure 3).
After moving to Los Angeles in 2009, Vanessa is continuing to connect people and natural resources, helping found the volunteer corps LA Green Grounds, working as a gallery interpreter and Master Gardener at LA County’s Natural History Museum, and creating an edible and native garden in her South LA backyard. Vanessa’s activities were toured last week by Still Water co-founders Joline Blais and Jon Ippolito, in Los Angeles for an ecology-themed set of activities at nearby University of Southern California.
The week culminates on Friday 2 March at the School of Cinematic Arts with Redesigning Reality, a hands-on session in hacking the “scripts” that govern us to make everyday life more sustaining and sustainable.
Workshop participants redesign their favorite foods and Web sites, looking to nature as a model for the victual and virtual.
How can rural economies and ecologies benefit from wired citizens? Still Water Fellow Miigam’agan and co-director Joline Blais tackle the subject along with New Media colleague Bill Kuykendall at two conferences organized by Maine Rural Partners and Portland Maine Permaculture.
At the 8th Annual ESTIA EcoPeace Conference, Still Water Co-Director Joline Blais asked her audience how to get more kids involved in growing food, connecting to the earth, and otherwise participating in conversations about a sustainable future.