The Northern Climate Conference
Last month students and staff presented our second annual student-led conference on the theme of climate action and sustainable practice on Wednesday 22 March 2023 at our Church Square Campus.
Student led research included multiple strands of enquiry around this subject area and events included workshops, presentations, and an exhibitions. MA Design History student Harry Frasers – one of the conference organisers – presented his work “Climate Action Through A Queer Lens as well as a sister solo exhibition called The Good, The Bad, The Sustainable. Speaking of the project he said “The aim was to create a research project into sustainability through my own queer point of view and showcase how you can use environmentalist theories as a blueprint for a queer arts practice.”
A full programme of activities included guest speakers that shared how to raise awareness on issues around climate and sustainability through their creative practice. Over 20 artists, designers and photographers exhibited their work responding to climate change at our Church Street campus. Postgraduate lecturer Alyson Agar said, “The Northern Climate Conference provided the opportunity to further develop our teaching and learning around climate change, and ways in which staff and students can disseminate research. Through collaborative and participatory research, we have developed our resources on climate activism, and have created a hub in our Student Union to share knowledge, research and resources”.
Student-led workshops on sustainable eco-crafts were held in the SU spaces and a showcase of Climate Action screen-prints, zines, t-shirts, totes, and posters where created by BA Hons Graphic Design students in the SU (graphics students also created the conference branding and online materials). All proceeds from sales went directly to climate charities. Finally, conference goers participated in research activities by contributing to our creative visual research wall in Church Square.
- Sustainability in the School Alyson Agar, Senior Lecturer in Research & Scholarly Activity Plenary
- Climate Action Through a Queer Lens Harry Fraser, MA Design History Conference Presentation
- Artist Talk Eyv Hardwick, Learning & Teaching Development Manager
- Raising Conservation Awareness in South East Asia through Photography Gregor Seaton, BA Photography Conference Presentation
- Nature Exposure Grace Ede, MA Arts Practice Conference Presentation
- Look Up A photo walk around Church Street with Jade Robinson, MA Design Practice
- Eco workshops Workshop leads: Harry Fraser, Grace Ede, Bee Yale, Theo James SU
- Tour around Church Street Exhibitions & Visual Research Wall
- BA Hons Graphic Design Level 5 students showcased a Climate Action screen-prints, zines t-shirts, totes, and posters in our SU! All proceeds from sales went directly to climate charities.
- Future Ecologies by Oliveia Bartlett (BA Fine Art) Combining traditional painterly mediums with household chemicals, Oliveia Bartlett’s photographic works highlight the human impact on the planet’s climate and eco-systems.
- The Good, The Bad and The Sustainable by Harry
Fraser (MA Design History) Following on from their conference presentation on queer ecologies, Harry Fraser utilises found images and recycled imagery of masculine stereotypes, re-contextualised as Gen Z queer utopias.
- Concerning Climate Curated by Clement Hewison and Jack Purvis, this
exhibition brings together several creatives who share a collective aim of raising awareness to climate change through creative practice.
- Coal and Butterflies by Emma Smith (BA Fine Art) Through large-scale abstract paintings, Emma Smith charts her journeys around Hartlepool’s Heritage Coastline.
- Light Lines by Lily Jones (BA Fine Art) Lily Jones explores the infinite possibilities of the sky through large scale works on paper.
Many thanks to the artists, designers, photographers, and creatives who have so generously contributed to the conference:
Clement Hewison (BA Photography), Jack Purvis (BA Photography), Harry Fraser (MA Design History), Grace Ede (MA Arts Practice) Special thanks to Eyv Hardwick, Olivia Burton, Paul Clay, Owen Waddington, Daniel Tierney, and Kath Bell. For any further information, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org