Transition Towns, Peak Oil and Performance Art


vonKrahl.Akadeemia / Rob Hopkins from VonKrahl on Vimeo.

Teleconferencing Meets Performance Art
When we post videos on TreeHugger, we are often asked to provide a transcript or description of the video content for those who can’t view online video. But where do I start with this one? Profound and witty commentary on the state of the world, or pretentious nonsense? You decide. The jury is still out for me, but I'm going to sit down and watch this again later with an open mind. Rob Hopkins, who is by now familiar to many TreeHuggers as the founder of the Transition Towns movement, presented an hour-long lecture about peak oil as part of the ‘Life After Capitalism’ series of lectures at the Von Krahl Theatre in Tallinn in Estonia. The talk created an opportunity for creative interludes that illustrate the content – percussionists, performers painting their feet blue, paint being loaded into overhead projectors, and Rob’s disembodied presence presenting from a billboard in the middle of a crowded street. Whatever one makes of the more unusual elements in the above video, the event illustrated an important point – you don’t have to travel anymore in order to meet or present. (Of course it also demonstrated that teleconferencing can cede additional power and input to event organizers or creative collaborators...)

Rob delivered the entire lecture without the need for travel any further than his nearby college. The video actually shows quite well the power of such technology, providing both a face-to-face interaction between the presenter and audience, as well as the usual powerpoint visuals and slides. And of course the environmental benefits are enormous. In fact Rob reckons a similar talk delivered virtually to New Zealand recently allowed him to save 6 times his own body weight in fuel!

But back to the art – it seems Rob’s ‘performance’ inspired another film by Marit Sirgmets, a member of the audience, which I include below. In fact, Rob was so bewildered by this particular tribute he is offering a signed copy of his book to anyone who can help interpret it. And for more conventional commentary, you can scroll below that for more information on Transition Towns here on TreeHugger.

VonKraahl Akadeemia via Transition Culture

Further Reading on Transition Towns
Transition Towns and Cities Emerge in the US
Transition Towns New Zealand Gains Strength
Transition Towns Reach Japan
Transition Towns Reach New Zealand
Transition Town Plants Up Nut Trees for Food Security
Interview with Rob Hopkins, founder of the movement
Transition City Bristol
The Transition Handbook
Transition Towns Reach Australia
The Virtual Orchard Project

Tags: Activism | Arts | Oil | Peak Oil | United Kingdom

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