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Confluences: On 2023

Welcome to Confluences, a weekly column on art, kinship and life. Each week we approach one of the themes of the magazine’s current print issue by looking at a creative event, endeavour or body of work that links to that theme and taps into a larger conversation with the world around us.

As we bid farewell to 2023 and ring in 2024, I’m highlighting some past Confluences columns from this past year:

“Preserving our botanical and environmental roots is essential - and memory, rather than a symptom of climate despair, becomes not only a tonic but an essential ingredient of this process.” - On poet Sarah Ghazal Ali’s poem “The Origin of Species”

“To bring these methodologies back becomes an act of connection to pre-industrial old ways of engaging with nature, as well as to the deep cycles of symbiosis it’s possible to achieve with the natural world.” - On photographer Ameena Rojee (our newsletter editor!)’s photo project, Crocus Valley

“The viewer is granted the space and autonomy to draw a cohesive picture of a community borne out of the collective desire to resist displacement and live with dignity. Reclaim the City’s slogan is “Land for people, not for profit,” and as No Place But Here demonstrates, living this motto requires consistent, communal effort from all involved. It is clear that the politics and geographies of spatial and land justice are intertwined - and that community lies at the heart of it all.” - On short documentary No Place But Here

“it becomes clear that not only does Create Dangerously seek to draw interdisciplinary connections across time, oceans and nationalities but the exhibition also ties into a larger worldview of connection between art-maker and viewer. Above all, Whittle makes a compelling argument for a paradigm shift: a reframing of collective care and community as a mode of resistance, and resistance as something full of love and hope.” - On artist Alberta Whittle’s exhibition, Create Dangerously, at the National Galleries of Scotland: Modern One in Edinburgh.

Wishing you all a restful and festive new year!

Until next week,

Madeleine

Columnist

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