Date of Award


Document Type

MA Project - Restricted Access (SIA Only)

Project Type

MA Project - Business Plan

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Contemporary Art

First Advisor

Melanie Marino


Environmental issues and predictions are growingly grave provoking a spectrum of denial, rage, and apathy. Many artists address these issues by creating work that aims to educate and convey sorrowful and fearful emotions to motivate change, but the topic’s overwhelming, complicated tangle usually make points feel preachy or indigestible, thus forgotten and null. Further, our current political environment seeks to make all issues partisan, which is embraced by citizens as a strategy to simplify their complicated lives. As a result of being politicized, environmental issues are handled with fruitless emotions rather than solution-driven reason. There is an urgent need to alleviate our collective environmental impact but nothing will be accomplished without addressing those social hurdles intertwined in that fight.

I would like to propose that a method of grasping and managing environmental issues is to:

A. approach communities individually and hone focus on their local issues,

B. enlist artists that enfold other disciplines in their practice to experiment with solutions,

C. give those artists the opportunity to present their ideas in contexts that welcome and mix all kinds of community members,

D. candidly express the potential fiscal benefits of these solutions,

E. and do so in an alluring, pleasurable way.

I believe the best platform for combining these strategies is an art quinquennial.

In this proposal each prong will be explored and given thorough explanation. Further, I will also propose the first quinquennial iteration to illustrate the concepts. The quinquennial will be called MMXL (2040) after the recently pronounced date where on the globe will see crisis level effects of climate change. The first quinquennial will be in New Orleans in 2020 and focus primarily on the wetlands. There will be five quinquennial following the introductory New Orleans iteration, concluding in its title year of MMXL. Each iteration will be in a ‘Red’ state or county and completely focus on its location’s most eminent local environmental issues.