Aesthetics in the Age of Environmental Crises

 

3–5 June 2021, Online

Welcome

Welcome to the 14th international summer conference of the International Institute of Applied Aesthetics (IIAA).

The city of Lahti (Finland) has provided venues for the summer conference during past years. In 2021, the conference is hosted in relation to Lahti – The European Green Capital 2021. The conference is organized, for the first time, online. 

We invite scholars, artists, and other professionals working with environmental issues, as well as everyone interested in the intersection of aesthetics and environmental crises, to join the three-day online conference.

Environments and human living conditions are undergoing drastic changes both locally and globally due to human activity. We face challenges that make it difficult to live meaningful and ecologically sustainable lives. We build our identities and pursue experiences in numerous, ecologically harmful ways. In this situation, feelings of helplessness, distress, and fear are common. It seems we do not have practices for constructively sharing the burden of encountering global environmental change.

At the same time, the effects of climate change have not fully reached environmental aesthetics. Philosophers have written very little on aesthetics and climate change. Aesthetic values, sensibility, and imagination are important factors for mitigating environmental problems. We need these perspectives to be able to redefine the everyday, enrich our perception, and to look for new ways of being and doing.

Behind the Conference

Behind the conference is the project Sensus Communis – the new age of environmental appreciation, which brings together scientific and artistic ways to support sustainable development. The project highlights the need for active participation and forms part of the official program of Lahti – European Green Capital 2021. The project blog (in Finnish) is here.

   

International Institute of Applied Aesthetics (IIAA) 
14th International Summer Conference

Aesthetics in the Age of Environmental Crises 
June 3–5, 2021, Lahti, Finland

Call for Papers

(Download the CfP as PDF)

Environments and human living conditions are undergoing drastic changes both locally and globally due to human activity. We face challenges that make it difficult to live meaningful and ecologically sustainable lives. We build our identities and pursue experiences in numerous, ecologically harmful ways. In this situation, feelings of helplessness, distress, and fear are common. It seems we do not have practices for constructively sharing the burden of encountering global environmental change.

At the same time, the effects of climate change have not fully reached environmental aesthetics. Philosophers have written very little on aesthetics and climate change. Aesthetic values, sensibility, and imagination are important factors for mitigating environmental problems. We need these perspectives to be able to redefine the everyday, enrich our perception, and to look for new ways of being and doing.

We invite scholars, artists, and other professionals working with environmental issues to explore the role of aesthetic values and aesthetic experiences in the age of environmental crises. We call on researchers to consider the function of the aesthetic appreciation of natural and urban environments in the contemporary world. What does aesthetic sustainability mean and how does it manifest itself? How does climate change influence our aesthetic appreciation of nature and built environments? These and similar issues will be addressed during the conference.

We also give the possibility to enter into a dialogue with a new performing arts project which seeks to find new ways to cope in the time of the looming ecological collapse. This interactive artwork will be exhibited during the congress. The work is produced by the religiously unaffiliated performing arts collective Ilmastokirkko (The Climate Church), which artistically explores the relationship between ecological crises and the sacred. The creation of the work can be followed in a blog (https://www.lahdenyliopistokampus.fi/vuoropuhelussa/) from September 2020 onwards.

We are looking for presentations of 20 minutes + 10 minutes of discussion. Depending on the Covid-19 situation, the Conference will be organized partly or completely online. We will provide further information early next year.

Abstracts of 300–400 words should be sent to submission@iiaacongress2021.com by 15th January 2021.

The conference is organized by the International Institute of Applied Aesthetics (IIAA), the research project Environmental Aesthetics in Turmoil, and the performing arts project Ilmastokirkko (The Climate Church). The conference is supported by Lahti – European Green Capital 2021, the Lahti University Campus, and the Arts Promotion Center Finland (Taike).

Contact: Noora-Helena Korpelainen, University of Helsinki, contact@iiaacongress2021.com

iiaacongress2021.com

Keynote Speakers

Emily Brady (Texas A&M University, USA)

Marcello Di Paola (Humanities Department, University of Palermo, Italy)

Ville Lähde (BIOS Research Unit, Helsinki)

Conference Committee:

Arto Haapala, University of Helsinki

Jukka Mikkonen, University of Helsinki

Sanna Lehtinen, Aalto University

Kaisa Kortekallio, University of Helsinki

Noora-Helena Korpelainen (Coordinator), University of Helsinki

In association with the performing arts project