Artists seek academic inspiration in Cambridge

Published: 20 July 2016 at 14:18

A picture of fruit by Marika Troili

Two-week Sustainability Residency is taking place at Anglia Ruskin University

Untitled PageAnglia Ruskin University is hosting the Cambridge Sustainability Residency, a fortnight where artists are influenced by science and the environment. 

The artists will be inspired by a packed programme of guest speakers, laboratory visits and conversations with local grassroots groups, and their finished pieces will go on show to the public during a special event at the Cambridge School of Art on Saturday, 30 July. 

This year’s themes of growth and insulation are used as entry points for the artists to explore the complexities of sustainability.

Marina Velez, founder and organiser of the Cambridge Sustainability Residency, studied for a Masters in Fine Art at Anglia Ruskin.  Marina said: 


“The residency is designed to be a space for cross-disciplinary collaborations and dialogue, and the artists are inspired by the people they talk to during the two weeks. 

“We have invited Dr Michael Hrebeniak from the Faculty of English at the University of Cambridge, who will be talking about cultural environmentalism, and Professor Susanna Rostas from the Social Anthropology department, who will discuss her research on the concept of ‘Lekil Kuxlekal’ or ‘how to live well’. 

“We will explore conservation and the ‘Red List’ with researchers Charlie Butt and Maria Dias from BirdLife International, visit the Reisner Lab, where scientists will show us cutting-edge research on solar fuel, and the Sainsbury Laboratory, where scientists investigate how plants respond to climate change.”


The Cambridge Sustainability Residency has also built strong links with Anglia Ruskin’s Global Sustainability Institute and this year Dr Davide Natalini will run a workshop showing the artists how computers can model environmental catastrophes.

The residency also includes a skills workshop at Wysing Arts Centre and a “takeover” of the kitchen at Cambridge FoodCycle, whose volunteers use food discarded by supermarkets to cook for the local community every Saturday. 

For further information about Cambridge Sustainability Residency and the free show in the Ruskin Gallery on Saturday, 30 July, visit https://cambridgesustainabilityresidency.com