At AltVisions, we have always wanted to see ourselves as a collective. This does not mean that we act together or think with one mind but simply that we keep each other in mind, learn from one another’s ventures and find ourselves bound together in myriad multi- and bi-lateral partnerships. Below are some of the people we’re currently engaging with.
Wendy is Professor of Gender, Diversity and Sustainable Development at the International Institute of Social Studies of the Erasmus University in The Hague. She is the founder of WEGO-ITN, a network contributing to the political ecology, feminist studies, human geography, anthropology, and development studies’ understanding of extractivism, commoning, care, communities, livelihoods, embodied subjectivities and resistance to development. She is also active in Ontgroei, the Dutch Degrowth network. Wendy was initially invited to AltVisions because she offers an alternative vision of democracy rooted in feminist political ecology.
Wendy’s reflections on the festival: “I thought responsibility to link and engage art/activism/academe was a very strong theme. Personally I found the engagement with art as a political actor very inspiring. The ethics of care in an embodied and conscious way for ourselves and the environment was another theme. This was exemplified in the way the food was served apart from it being delicious, the ethics behind it was amazing”.
Miriam is Assistant Professor of Literature & Art in the Faculty of Art & Social Sciences, Maastricht University. Connecting social sciences and humanities concepts and approaches, her work addresses the interrelations between cities, popular culture, political economy and the environment. She is also taking a lead on organizing the Cultural Politics Key Conversation of the International Degrowth Conference 2021, which will be held in The Hague. Miriam was invited to AltVisions because of her creative melding of culture and politics within the framework of degrowth.
Isabel van der Meijde and Roosmarijn van Soest found each other on Instagram in 2019 through a shared passion for sustainable fashion. Isabel already gave sewing lessons in The Hague, while Roos had just graduated from the Willem de Kooning Academy, and they were both looking for a studio. They first occupied several anti-squatting properties, until they realized there had to be a real business, focused on sustainable fashion. They finally found that building in the Boekhorststraat in The Hague, and started the Sewing Shop: a place where you can repair clothes, rent or buy a sewing machine, take sewing lessons, visit sustainable events, buy sustainable local products and much more. In other words: not a sustainable fashion store, but a sustainable fashion community. Isabel and Roosmarijn were first invited to AltVisions because their sewing classes and clothes swaps demonstrate an alternative approach to consumption and exchange.
Here is a link to their powerpoint presentation at the AltVisions Festival 2020. Their reflection on the festival: “Mainly the key theme during these talks was a more sustainable way of consuming. Not only on clothes, which was our part here, but also on food and services. For us, this is a very important topic to talk about and to share our ideas about it with our followers”
Anubhav Kandpal is the founder of Conscious Kitchen, freelance Leadership & Sustainability Consultant and a core team member of Lekker Nassuh. The non-profit foundation Conscious Kitchen promotes sustainability through saving food from the local market in The Hague and transform these into a delicious, free, and vegan 3 course meal to bring people together for a dinner to wind down and connect to each other and to sustainable action.
Anubhav Kandpal was invited to talk at the AltVisions Festival 2020 in a panel on reciprocity, as his organization exemplifies how a local community of trust can be organised around food, while also stimulating sustainable practices. Conscious Kitchen (with chef Yannick Bergmann) prepared one of our collective festival dinners at Stroom itself.
One of Anubhav’s reflections on the AltVisions Festival 2020: “I think the key themes were: Re-envisioning, redefining the current status quo, exploring beyond what is possible to what is necessary for social & global change. And for me there was this element of lateral thinking. Taking solutions from one discipline and applying it to another.”
Jessica den Outer
Jessica is a consultant, researcher and speaker on the Rights of Nature. She is also a jurist and founding member of Earth Advocacy Youth and independent consultant on Rights of Nature. Her expertise on the Rights of Nature has been recognised by the United Nations Harmony with Nature Network, for which she is an Earth-centered Law Expert.
Jessica was a speaker at the AltVisions Festival 2020 in the panel called ‘Reconciled to the Earth’. Reflecting on the festival, Jessica felt that two key themes were cooperation and listening. She writes: “Speaking from the RoN perspective, this would also mean we have to develop a tool/roadmap/guideline on how we will cooperate with humans and animals. How can we listen to their voices and anticipate their needs? From the overall perspective of the AltVisions festival: How can we listen and incorporate the needs of future generations in redesigning society?”
Rosa Marie Mulder is a representative of the Unda Foundation, which manages and protects the conceptual artwork Flag of Compassion. Rosa is currently doing an MA in Contemporary Art in a Global Perspective at Leiden University. She was invited to AltVisions because her interpretation of the flag of compassion offers a new way of thinking about the role of art in political transformation.
Some of Rosa’s reflections on the festival: “All topics discussed are relevant and to make theoretical talks resonate, I think it works well to have artists or art projects that visualize and imagine the discussed topics, which helps to start re-imagine”
Myriam Braakhuis is one of Extinction Rebellion’s Red Rebels and a Chaplain with the Salvation Army.
Myriam was invited to present at the AltVisions Festival 2020 in the panel New Ways of Art, in which she reflected on the ways in which art can be mobilised for political activism. Here’s her powerpoint presentation.
Myriam wrote the following, reflecting on the festival: “In my own panel, it was so great to see all those different approaches: from music to minimalism, from a flag to an exposition. It was great that you gave space to an explicit panel about art and activism. Those two can be so much more intertwined. That is an important subject to keep on thinking and exchanging about”.
Arpita is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the International Institute of Social Studies of the Erasmus University in The Hague. She is also active in Ontgroei, the Dutch Degrowth network. She was invited to AltVisions on account of her expertise in building a post-extractivist economy.
Here’s her powerpoint presentation: Arpita Bisht_AltVisions_New Economic Visions.pptx