This session was the first of 4 ‘Learning Sessions’ where the Assembly heard from ‘Expert Witnesses’ (people who have been invited to speak to the Assembly about one aspect or another of the topic in order to help equip participants to address the Assembly question).

The Expert Witnesses’ initial inputs were on video (see below) and they then answered questions from Assembly members in a ‘goldfish bowl’ discussion format.

Our ‘Expert Witnesses’ this week:

Mathilde Lopez from National Theatre Wales and Joe Roberts from Natural Resources Wales, have been collaborating with Gentle Radical (Turner Prize nominees) and a group of artists in Wales to explore how art can explicitly be used to influence, determine or evolve government policy – in this case in relation to the environment and climate change.

Mary Kramer runs Wabash Valley Art Spaces in Indiana USA, commissioning and siting outdoor sculptures in particular as a way of regenerating a town – re-imagining the way a place could look and feel, and how this might encourage people to look afresh or interact with it in a different way.

Rob Hopkins from Transition Network, and Author of ‘From What is to What if? is particularly interested in the ways that creativity and imagination can prompt us to create better ways of living and combat climate change. His book champions the human imagination and the way it can be used to ‘create a longing for something wonderful’ which people are then invested in working to make a reality.

Rob Hopkins, Transition Network and Author of “From ‘What is’ to ‘What if?'”

The full Art for the People Citizens’ Assembly Expert Witness video playlist (captioned) can be found here, and the BSL interpreted video playlist can be found here.

Our Writer-in-Residence, Liz Mytton, wrote some more Haiku verses:

Haiku verses from 28th October session:

When our dreams are green
Fresh realities present
Alternate futures

Jubilee: a call
To celebrate difference by
Skanking in the streets

This impulse to share
Verses, sketches, tales – it cries,
‘Let’s work together!’

Haiku verses from 4th November session:

Why don’t you speak in
Language that we understand
If it’s meant for us?

You must remember
Those who are not yet present
Who whisper in vain

Imagination
A resource in scarce supply
We can’t live without

To find out more & get involved:

Follow the arrow links below to find out more about the Citizens’ Assembly, and to have your say about arts, culture, creativity and imagination.