What’s Next for Earth: Energy Online Exhibition

Michele Guieu | March 3, 2021 | Leave a Comment

What's Next for Earth Energy Art Call Contributions

Cristian Pietrapiana (NYC, US) Windmills (detail) –  Cristian Pietrapiana © 2021

"Acting without this understanding is like putting a bandage on a life-threatening injury."

What's Next for Earth ENERGY Art Call

In 2021, What’s Next for Earth proposes an ensemble of art calls related to Climate Change and inspired by The Post Carbon Institute’s FREE online course: THINK RESILIENCEFor the Energy Art Call, participants were asked to watch the introductory video (5 min) and the first lesson: Energy (12 min). 

“We’re starting this series with the subject of energy, and for a good reason. Energy is key to everything—it’s an essential driver of the natural world and of the human world, and it will also be pivotal to the societal transformations we’ll be experiencing in the 21st century and beyond. Energy is what enables us to live and to build civilizations and thriving economies. But it’s even more fundamental than that. Without energy, literally, nothing can happen.”

[Think Resilience is an online course to help you get started on doing something. It features twenty-two video lectures—about four hours total—by Richard Heinberg, one of the world’s foremost experts on the urgency and challenges of transitioning society away from fossil fuels.

Think Resilience is rooted in Post Carbon Institute’s years of work in energy literacy and community resilience. It packs a lot of information into four hours, and by the end of the course you’ll have a good start on two important skills:

  1. How to make sense of the complex challenges society now faces. What are the underlying, systemic forces at play? What brought us to this place? Acting without this understanding is like putting a bandage on a life-threatening injury.
  2. How to build community resilience. While we must also act in our individual lives and as national and global citizens, building the resilience of our communities is an essential response to the 21st century’s multiple sustainability crises.”]

Nancy D. Lane, an artist from Melbourne Australia, who participated in several of the What’s Next for Earth’s art calls, sent us this message: “Your art calls are challenging – but then so is climate change. We need to use all means possible to spread the message”. 

Many thanks to all the artists who took on the challenge – Next Art Call coming  very soon!

What's Next for Earth Energy Art Call Contributions
Cristian Pietrapiana © 2021

Cristian Pietrapiana (NYC, US) – Instagram: @cristianpietrapiana
ink on paper, 20×16 inches.
From a consumer economy to a conserver economy…

Terri Hughes-Oelrich © 2021

Terri Hughes-Oelrich (California, US) – Instagram: @hughesoelrich
digital image
6″ x 6″
The oil wells have been disappearing from my childhood home, Huntington Beach, for the past 50 years. I watched the derrick over my back fence meditatively, not knowing what it stood for. I wish I could have seen a gusher too.

Nancy D Lane © 2021

Nancy D Lane (Melbourne, Victoria, Australia) – Instagram: nancydeebrooches
Loop-the-loop, nine views of a brooch made from a hunk of cement and bent wire found on the streets of Melbourne.
Our planet is on an energy roller coaster, looping the loop at breakneck speed, to what end? Energy is what living things need to survive, but we need it in forms that do not devastate our planet. I have just started the free Think Resilience course from The Post Carbon Institute. Recommended!

Marcela Villaseñor © 2021

Marcela Villaseñor (California, US) – Instagram: @mvillasenor
[Regeneration, volcanoes, volcano energy, geothermal]

Christina Conklin © 2021

Christina Conklin – Instagram bychristinaconklin
collage, 24” x 18”, 2021

Climate, race, resource extraction, and ecological systems form a complex web of energy production and consumption that poses existential risks to much of life on earth. 80% of multi-celled creatures on earth are nematodes, tiny soil worms that create healthy soil, while impoverished men in Madagascar dig soil out by hand looking for sapphires and Peruvian women sort asparagus for export. We stand at a crossroads, the same one hundreds of slaves stood on in Alabama for the largest auction of humans in US history. Will we learn to see energy systems clearly and use them wisely for the benefit of all beings, or will we continue to divide, chop, exploit, exterminate, and pollute? The revolution will not be televised.

Quin de la Mer © 2021

Quin De La Mer (Indian Wells, California, US) – Instagram: i3rstudios
Inside the Petal
phytogram filmmaking still, 6×6”, 2021
New work from the series Elsewhen inspired by the Energy art calls. This piece answers the call for work about Energy and a post-carbon world.

Quin De La Mer (Indian Wells, California, US) – Instagram: i3rstudios
Memento Mori
micro moving postcard, experimental film, 2020

Responding to the art call and with thoughts on ENERGY after watching Post Carbon Institute’s Think Resilience course.

AnaCo.Art (United Kingdom) – Instagram: anaco.art
Seaweed Forest
Acrylic on paper
Size: 48” x 69.5”
Seaweed has the potential to become a significant source for third-generation biofuels production. This artwork was inspired by the beauty of a new industry capable of helping to produce energy and food sources. The painting depicts the unseen spectacular underwater life and the new habitats that seaweed cultivation can create. It is an encouragement to consider integrating seaweed as a renewable energy source by highlighting the beauty of our already existent natural resources and thriving ecosystems.

Pascal Ken © 2021

Pascal Ken  (Saint-Brévin-Les-Pins, France) – Instagram: @pascalken
MANTRA GENKI, Back to basics 1
Acrylic on roadmap 

MANTRA GENKI / “genki” 元気 in Kanji includes the words “gen” (元), which means root, source or original, and “ki” (気), meaning air, breath or wind.
So, “genki” refers to the original state of life (i.e. breathing) – which is a very traditional Chinese idea of “qi” (氣) that dates back to the time of Confucius.
MANTRA GENKI 元気 Back to basics
I am able to learn how to protect my own energy
I am able to focus on my real needs
I am able to reduce my consumption as strictly necessary
I am able to change
I am able to reduce
I am able to recycle
I am able to reuse
Repeat after me!

Pascal Ken  (Saint-Brévin-Les-Pins, France) – Instagram: @pascalken
MANTRA GENKI, Back to basics 2

Deborah kennedy © 2021

Deborah Kennedy (California, US) – Instagram @deborahkennedyart
Homage to the Homage: A endless energy machine to heal the sky

This drawing is my reflection on Jean Tinguely’s machine performance at the Museum of Modern Art in 1960. His artwork, Homage to New York, was conceived as a “self-constructing and self-destroying work of art.” For me, this is a metaphor for our self-constructing and self-destroying civilization. My wistful drawing envisions a machine to provide endless streams of energy to a world destroying itself to consume more energy.

collection cbdesign © 2021

collections cbdesign (Paris, France) – Instagram: @collections_cbdesign

Énergie > C comme Carbone : il y a urgence à en sortir! Lisez les propositions de la CCC. La Convention Citoyenne pour le Climat a pour mandat de définir une série de mesures permettant d’atteindre une baisse d’au moins 40 % des émissions de gaz à effet de serre d’ici 2030.

Energy> C for Carbon: there is an urgent need to get out of it! Read CCC’s proposals. The Citizen’s Climate Convention is mandated to define a series of measures to achieve a reduction of at least 40% in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.

Eric Meyer (Paris, France) – Instagram: @eric_meyer

Énergies Libérées 1
Energies Released 1

Eric Meyer © 2021

Eric Meyer (Paris, France) – Instagram: @eric_meyer

Énergies Libérées 2
Energies Released 2

Ivan Sigg WNFE Energy Art Call
Ivan Sigg © 2021

Ivan Sigg (Paris, France) – Instagram @ivansigg

Énergie gratuite et illimitée du soleil : Un gâteau est en train de cuire à 175 degrés dans mon four solaire ! 

Free and unlimited energy from the sun: A cake is baking at 175 degrees in my solar oven! 

Four Solaire Iguane.
Fablabo Four Solaire.

Marianne Bickett © 2021

Marianne Bickett (Oregon, US) – Instagram: @mariannalmaremoments

The words are small but came to me as I looked up into the sky through our kitchen skylight. The clouds became distant supernovae and suddenly I could sense our planet, our solar system, our galaxy as part of this stunning flow of energy emanating from the birth and death of stars and the seeding of life all over the universe. Thank you for this opportunity to participate in the WhatsNextForEarth Energy art call!

Nadine Marie WNFE Energy
Nadine Marie © 2021

Nadine Marie (Earth) – Instagram: naydino
Veiled relics
Wearable soft sculpture created from melted plastic bags

Historically across many cultures, veils were worn to shield from unseen evil spirits. Plastics derived from fossil fuels are a type of veiled evil. It is an incredible material that has propelled us forward, protected our bodies, allowed us to develop very fast. But we’ve misplaced it into places it should not go. We wear it on our bodies, it washes into our soils and oceans, as women we are expected to shove it into our bodies. There is nowhere we can escape the fossilized dead that we’ve raised from deep in the Earth. I sometimes wonder about our future, when the land of the living has reached its limits. Will we still be around to hang our plastic relics on the wall to remind us of this time in history?

Michele Guieu © 2021

Michele Guieu (Sunnyvale, California, US) – Instagram: @micheleguieu

What will be the energy sources of the future?
Digital collage (photos taken in the Bay Area and in the Sierras)

Inspired by the Post Carbon Institute “Think Resilience” free online course. Lesson 2, “Energy”, is packed with food for thoughts:

“Our best bets are solar and wind, but these have very different characteristics from the energy sources that the modern industrial society was built around.”

“For 99% of our History, we lived entirely on renewable energy” 

“The Fossil Fuel Age has lasted only one-tenth of one percent of our History as Homo Sapiens. Its last chapter is beginning to unfold right now.”

“Our future may well be slower-paced and localized.”


@WhatsNextForEarth is a participative art project based on Instagram that invites the community to respond to a monthly topic and call for submissions, reflecting on the human predicament. If you have any questions, please send a message to michele@mahbonline.org
Follow What’s Next for Earth on Instagram!

The views and opinions expressed through the MAHB Website are those of the contributing authors and do not necessarily reflect an official position of the MAHB. The MAHB aims to share a range of perspectives and welcomes the discussions that they prompt.