North Country Art, Land, and the Environment Summit Begins Sept. 9 | St. Lawrence University

North Country Art, Land, and the Environment Summit Begins Sept. 9

North Country scientists, scholars, government officials, activists, artists, and community organizers will come together to discuss issues that are vital to the environmental future of the region and the world during the upcoming North Country Art, Land and the Environment Summit.

The summit, which is a St. Lawrence University Arts Collaborative project, will include an outdoor art exhibition open to the St. Lawrence community and virtual discussions open to the public. The event begins Wednesday, Sept. 9.

The Summit website says, “In the face of the climate crises, communities across the world are organizing to protect the lungs of the planet and create a sustainable future. While this is a global struggle, the seeds of resistance start on a local level. The Kaniatarowanénhne / St. Lawrence River Watershed (Haudenosaunee/Anishinaabe Territory) is no exception. The North Country Art, Land, and Environment 2020 Summit will utilize art and conversation to contextualize this struggle and present local environmental solutions.”

Blake Lavia and St. Lawrence University graduate Tzintzun Aguilar-Izzo ’15 are part of the Talking Wings Collective. Lavia and Aguilar-Izzo are the current Project Organizers for the North Country Art Land and Environment Summit and are working on documenting stories of regenerative resistance across Turtle Island.

This program was funded in part by Humanities New York, with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities, and St. Lawrence University. Collaborating partners include Adirondack Diversity Initiative, Akwesasne Cultural Center, Bittersweet Farm, Clarkson University, Grasse River Heritage, Northeast Farmers of Color Land Trust, Paul Smith’s College, the Six Nations Indian Museum, St. Lawrence Land Trust, St. Lawrence University, SUNY Potsdam, Talking Wings Productions, and Traditional Arts in Upstate New York (TAUNY), among others.

Panel/Roundtable Discussions:

  • Rivers, Water & Life: Learn about the past, present, and future of the region's rivers.
    • Wednesday, Sept. 9, 6:30 p.m.
    • Speakers: Iakonikonriiosta (Akwesasne Cultural Center Museum), Jessica Jock (St. Regis Mohawk Tribe Environment Division), Shane Rogers (Clarkson University), Lee Willbanks (Environmental Advocate and RIVERKEEPER), and Blake Lavia and Tzintzun Aguilar-Izzo ’15 (project organizers)
  • Food Sovereignty in the Time of COVID-19: Under the shadow of COVID-19, find alternatives to globalized industrial food production.
    • Wednesday, Sept. 16, 6:30 p.m.
    • Speakers: Katsitsionni Fox (Akwesasne Activist/Organizer), Himanee Gupta-Carlson (SUNY Empire State College), Catherine Bennett ‘16 (Bittersweet Farm and Milkweed Tussock Tubers)
  • Environmental Racism and Criminal Justice in the North Country: Examine the connection between the Doctrine of Discovery, environmental racism, and COVID-19.
    • Wednesday, Sept. 23, 6:30 p.m.
    • Speakers: Stephanie Morningstar (The Northeast Farmers of Color Land Trust), Nicky Hylton-Patterson (Adirondack Diversity Initiative), Jackie Hall Thompson (Akwesasne Activist/Organizer), and Craig Arquette (St. Regis Mohawk Tribe Environment Division)
  • The Environmental Future of the St. Lawrence Watershed; Consider how to mitigate the effects of the human-induced climate crises, local environmental exploitation, and mass migrations.
    • Wednesday, Sept. 30, 6:30 p.m.
    • Panelists: Abraham Francis (Mohawk Council of Akwesasne Environment Program), Kathy Stein (St. Lawrence University, NY League of Women Voters), Michael Twiss (Clarkson University), Tony David (St. Regis Mohawk Tribe Environment Division), and Leigh McGaughey (River Institute)
  • Concluding Address and Film Screening: The directors of BURNING OR BREATHING will discuss how to protect watersheds on a global scale.
    • Friday, Oct. 2, 6:30 p.m.

Learn more about the North Country Art, Land and the Environment Summit.