The Project

“Acting without this understanding is like
putting a bandage on a life-threatening injury.”
Richard Heinberg

In April 2020, at the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic and during a period of confinement, Michele Guieu established What’s Next for Earth, an Instagram-based art initiative.

The project has now proposed 24 art calls to the creative community, all focused on the Human Predicament, with 135 artists worldwide having participated, some of them more than once, as of April 2023. The MAHB, a Stanford initiative, supports What’s Next for Earth, and contributions to the art calls are featured on the MAHB Arts Community page. The art calls are also disseminated via the newsletters of WEAD and Ecoartspace.

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The severity of the converging crises we face is not widely understood, and the media struggles between causing alarm and presenting a superficial green image. To take action, it is essential to become informed. Artists have a vital role in communicating this urgent message.

The complexity of our society has made it increasingly vulnerable. The Human Predicament encompasses a range of issues, including climate change, a growth-based economy, overconsumption, overpopulation, resource depletion, fossil fuel dependence, pollution, loss of biodiversity and wildlife habitat, deforestation, soil degradation, urbanization, and inequality. These challenges bring with them the possibility of the collapse of our civilization.

The need to shift the narrative is urgent.

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Michele Guieu
What’s Next for Earth’s Founder, Curator, and Director.

Michele is an interdisciplinary artist, art educator, activist, and farmer who focuses on the urgency of changing our relationship with nature and the existential threats we face today. She creates site-specific installations, including participatory ones, in natural and public spaces. Michele began the What’s Next for Earth project shortly after becoming aware of the potential for societal collapse, with a strong belief that the arts are vital to creating new narratives that can lead to a resilient future. She currently serves as Art Editor at the MAHB (Millennium Alliance for Humanity and the Biosphere). Michele holds an MA in visual communication from the ENSAD (Ecole Nationale Superieure des Arts Decoratifs de Paris), France, and worked as a freelance graphic designer in Paris before relocating to the US in 2001.

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Christina Conklin
Co-host with Michele of the Artists and Creatives Group on The Deep Transformation Network, where What’s Next for Earth events take place [See the Events page].

Christina is an artist, writer, and researcher whose work investigates the intersection of natural and belief systems, often using the ocean as both site and metaphor. Her essays, exhibitions, and installations consider our cultural responses to the intersecting ecological and social crises of our time. She holds an MFA from California College of the Arts and has exhibited internationally. She recently completed writing and illustrating a book on climate change in the ocean, The Atlas of Disappearing Places: Our Coasts and Oceans in the Climate Crisis (The New Press, 2021). She joined What’s Next for Earth in 2021 to help connect the thought leaders, activists, and artists growing regenerative cultural stories in response to our precarious human predicament.

In the New

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Newsletter #12 October 12, 2023

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