Photo: Nature meets art in Vancouver's urban green spaces

By: Theresa Beer, Communications Specialist

The fast pace of city life creates a sense of unease for many urbanites, including stressed-out students. So what happens if you turn urban natural spaces into university classrooms? Emily Carr University of Art + Design students who joined the Rewilding Vancouver Community Projects course found out first-hand. Equipped with insights on rewilding from guest curator and author J.B. MacKinnon and a natural capital perspective from us, they were asked to produce videos about the transformative impact of time spent in nature.

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Through multiple visits to intact, restored or engineered green spaces in Metro Vancouver, the students explored personal observations from time spent in nature as well as conceptual themes such as the place where human and animal geographies intersect. Whether reconnecting to nature through dance, noticing the huge imprint of the smallest forest dwellers, reflecting on childhood memories or experiencing nature through the senses, students took on the role of citizen scientists, according to teacher Sarah Van Borek.

Our partnership with Emily Carr University of Art + Design, the Museum of Vancouver, J.B. MacKinnon and Ashoka Canada brings a creative lens to interpreting nature. The videos highlight the potential for making stronger nature connections through thought-provoking art.

Let the videos inspire your own nature sojourn:

Not to be missed: Featuring the UBC Farm and inspired by Janine Benyus's writing on Biomimicry, Andrew McKeachie's "Balance" explores the benefits of slowing down in our fast-paced city life:

How should we see nature? The Ashoka Changemaker Showcase features engaging stories, including our natural capital connection, by David Suzuki Foundation B.C. and Western Region director general Jay Ritchlin:

April 16, 2014

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