THEME / WILDERNESS
NASUTI was established as the first festival of contemporary art with an environmental focus. It combines creativity, art, design, innovation and ecological thinking. The festival program consists of exhibitions, lectures, discussions, workshops and other creative production in the form of presentations, performances and film screenings.
The fifth year of the NASUTI festival will take place in Banská Štiavnica (Jozef Kollár Gallery, Eleuzína Cultural Center and Art Café) as a series of events with a wide cultural and social impact aimed at the general cultural public, local residents and visitors, as well as children. The aim of the festival is to raise awareness of current environmental problems and solutions, sustainable lifestyles and environmental activism.
Through this year’s theme of the festival, which is WILDERNESS, we will, in addition to environmental protection, also address the limits of anthropocentrism, ecopsychology and misinformation accompanying (not only) the climate crisis. We will be also looking into the human mind, finding the neural points of the problem through mental health issues and other associated topics. The festival became a part of the international network project The Year of Climate Care, which is conceptually provided by the European Commission’s New European Bauhaus initiative.
We will look into the theme of WILDERNESS as a natural, but also social and cultural phenomenon. Once again, we find ourselves at the crossroads of art and science. Wilderness loss is a serious environmental problem of today. We usually understand wilderness as synonymous with chaos, danger and unpredictability. However, the ecosystem is disrupted by human activity, which we consider cultivation, the necessary acquisition of resources, or the right to housing and security. For the natural life, our system is a mess. In this shift of perspective, isn’t human society as well as individual mind the actual wilderness? We will examine this paradox from the view of natural sciences, art, culture, psychology, sociology and try to find the road to safer waters via mutual understanding, cooperation and cultural dialogue.
The climate crisis brings out a number of questions without straightforward and satisfying answers. Everything that concerns it, a human being tends to evaluate primarily in connection with his own life. We have all (within the popular psychological theory of the stages of grief) gone through -or are currently going through- the stages of denial, anger, depression and bargaining. But have we already crossed the line to the state of reconciliation? And is there still hope for us hidden in it?
It turns out that the biggest obstacle to saving the planet for humans are humans themselves. Our behavior, unwillingness to give up our own achievements, comfort and illusions about ourselves and society. Our home is the world, planet Earth – more precisely, how we perceive and experience it. Our oeikos is essentially a human illusion of the world and its arrangement, therefore our oeikology (ecology) is primarily a science about us. About what we consider to be nature, naturalness, where the boundaries of civilization lie for us and where the wilderness begins. We examine what scares us about it, what reassures us, as long as we are still sure of our steps and where we are already losing ground under our feet. Wilderness is always the other, the different. In the human world of concepts, wilderness is found beyond the walls of our homes, beyond the borders of safety, where we no longer (or yet) know it. Wilderness is chaotic, unknown, untamed, uncontrollable, excessive, incomprehensible, indescribable. That which is dangerous. But if this is really so, then why is the ecosystem collapsing due to human activity of attempts to control nature and the irreversible use of its resources? Why is our culture, warmth, comfort, speed, clothing, food, or solid and safe dwelling the cause of planetary chaos? As if everything was turning against us. But what if the real threat – the real wilderness – is hidden within ourselves? In our approach to animals, plants, water and air, inability to deny excess, irrational denial of facts and eternal cognitive dissonance (why don’t we protect nature, on which we essentially depend?).
Because the true wilderness is not beyond our comfort zone, it is located right at its core. The wilderness that we observe together does not lie in wait for us deep in the mountains or in the sea, it is found in man, in his relationships, inverted values, confused concepts, causes mixed with effects, information noises, rewritten histories and reluctance to look to the future. We try to use art to reflect these phenomena and, in joint discussions, to outline a path by which life on the planet can be navigated through the wilderness of civilization to safer waters.
We deal with the topic of anthropocentrism, its origin and the question of the strength of the arguments for its defense, tribal identities and the resulting social upheavals, information overload and related confusion and successful disinformation campaigns, the history of man and his reason, but also wild entertainment as a tool to release suppressed emotions and thoughts , subconsciously hidden but also consciously hidden nature of man. We want to look for points where we as humanity are still capable of consensus, to identify and classify the errors in which we live, we will try to break down (or at least disrupt) the barriers that separate us from each other and make mutual understanding impossible. Because only self-reflection and a consensual effort to improve the situation can lead us through a threat that humanity has never faced before.