Pamela Booker, MFA, our visiting scholar for the spring 2017 residency, is an author, educator, performance artist, and Lambda Literary Awards Finalist as well as an urban growing-sustainability enthusiast, Reiki healer and herbalist. Last past fall, she was co-plenary speaker on the topic of Race & Permaculture, at Northeast Women in Permaculture, 2016, Omega Institute. Her most recent publications include an essay for Anthropology of Consciousness, Interbeing Issue, (pending release 2017); featured performance- writer in the critically acclaimed Black/tino Queer Performance Anthology (Duke University Press 2016); and For Whom it Stands, an art exhibition book collection curated by the Maryland Museum of African American History & Culture and Smithsonian Affiliate (2016). She hosts greens4 squares.com, a blog that explores green issues and is the recipient of several Writer Fellowships/Residencies that include VCCA/Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center and the Norman Mailer Writers Colony. A graduate of the Goddard MFA-IA program in 2007, Pamela also served as core faculty in the undergraduate residencies from 2008-2016. Currently, she is Assistant Professor/ Writing Faculty at New York University, in the Global-Liberal Studies B.A. Program, is Community Board member for Open Meadows Foundation, and facilitates educational outreach at SWAG, a community-run farm in Newark, NJ. For more: pamelabooker.com and greens4squares.com. Here’s a summary of the workshop and keynote address she presented at the college in February:
Keynote Presentation: Where’s Your Tree? — Eco-Mediations, Roots, & Radical Rejuvenation. Human “emissions,” when released into the atmosphere, are as much driven by toxic particles, biases, complex metrics, emotional equations and carbon footprints. In her discussion, Where’s Your Tree?— an artist-initiated eco-project, Pamela Booker explores the partnering of art, nature, and eco-mediations/interventions driven by moral imperatives in the face of historic, environmental ruin of the planet and Black lives. With the understanding that “the ecological self is the ecology of the Earth,” her discussion considers the possibility of rediscovering generative, creative response and enacting sustainable practices in habitats where radical resistance, liberation, and freedom must continue to transpire in stewarding healthier plant and human ecosystems. Habitats addressed are distinguished by historical and current violations, shouts and hollers of shattered Lives, and include Underground Railroad sites and urban sister-cities in Philadelphia, Baltimore, Newark, and New York City.
Workshop: Where’s Your Tree? — Creating Eco-Mediations, Roots, & Radical Rejuvenation. Participate with Pamela in an eco-projects based workshop that explores how consciously performed “events” or “moments” can offer sustainable mediations/strategies for daily rigor, academic study, and be radically rejuvenating for whole human transactions. You can choose to participate in all events or select specific events of interest (see handout on GGI program site). Events will occur simultaneously. In each action, you are encouraged to keep notes and to consider what is ritualized, violating, or rejuvenating to spirit and imagination. We will close the workshop by sharing our experiences and discuss the environmental language of our current “American landscape.”