Art Activating Water Awareness

Christel Stalpaert

Drawing on Félix Guattari's The Three Ecologies, Christel Stalpaert researches “the ethico-aesthetic aegis of an ecosophy” (2000: 41): a contraction of ecology and philosophy that connects the environmental with a reflection on the psychic production of subjectivity and social relations. As such, gender and postcolonial perspectives are an inherent part of her ecological research in the arts. This approach also meets with current paradigm shifts in ecological thinking, demanding new modes of activism to tackle the complexity of current ecological crises, such as climate change. Drawing on Bruno Latour’s notion of political ecology, Stalpaert investigates and participates in alternative art-science worldings (Haraway), moving beyond the practice of ecology movements that are still burdened by an ideal image of Nature. 

Christel Stalpaert is Full Professor Performing and Media Art Studies of the Art Studies Dept. at Ghent University (Belgium). She is co-director of the research centre S:PAM (Studies in Performing Arts and Media). Her main areas of research are theatre, performance, dance and media art (since 1890) at the meeting-point of philosophy.

In the context of her ecological research track, Stalpaert has published on the ecozoic spectator in Kris Verdonck's EXOTE (with Sofie Verdoodt in Performance Research, 2012); on the paradigm shift from ecocriticism to ecoperformance in The Ethics of Art. Ecological Turns in the Performing Arts (with Byttebier, Amsterdam: Valiz, 2014); on eco-artists as diplomat of dissensus (in Performancee Philosophy, 2015 and Emerging Affinities. Marlgorzata Sugiera, Mateusz Borowski, Mateusz Chaberski (eds.), forthcoming); on composite bodies of resistance in Crew’s O_REX and Nicole Beutler’s Antigone (in Performance Research, 2015); and on an ecology of agential realism in Maria Lucia Cruz Correia's Urban Action Clinic GARDEN (in Performance Research, 2018 and in The Routledge Companion to Theatre and Politics, Peter Eckersall and Helena Grehan (eds.), Routledge, 2019) and on new modes of knowledge production in art-science worldings (in Didaskalia, 2018 and Performance and Posthumanism, Palgrave MacMillan 2020).