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  • AIF Spotlight: Jennifer Yu | Confluence Lab

    AIF crew 2024 Jennifer Yu Moscow, ID Jennifer Yu is the author of three young adult novels, including the forthcoming Grief in the Fourth Dimension. When not writing, you can find her weeping intermittently about the Boston Celtics, photos of the Earth from outer space, and the etymology of the word disaster. She has hopscotched across New England, Southern California, the Rockies, and the Pacific Northwest, but is perhaps happiest when living out of the trunk of her Toyota Corolla. She earned her bachelor's degree from the University of Pennsylvania and is currently an MFA candidate at the University of Idaho. TREX involvement More on her story in Fall 2024... but for now, she is looking forward to the AIF residency's emphasis on embodied learning and experiencing—so valuable to a writer who spends almost all her time parsing the word cognitively, from behind a laptop screen. She is also looking forward to the opportunity to witness fire as a subject of overlapping, sometimes conflicted or competing perspectives—fire as constructed by natural forces, by human practitioners, by scientific research, by culture, by artists, by writers, etc. Chat back to AIF residency Chat

  • Artists-in-Fire residency | the confluence lab

    ARTISTS-IN-FIRE an inaugural, immersive residency for artists and writers Fire operations at a Prescribed Fire Training Exchange (TREX) outside Ashland, OR. photo cred it: Sasha Michelle White ​As the Pacific Northwest and other regions grapple with the increasing reality of wildfire, the Confluence Lab is working to reimagine shared fire stories. The Confluence Lab’s inaugural Artists-In-Fire (AIF) residency is supporting 10 artists and writers from the Pacific Northwest and adjacent regions as boots-on-the-ground participants in prescribed fire. boots-on-the-ground Prescribed fire is the intentional burning of fire-prone landscapes for ecological and cultural benefit, conducted by experienced firefighters during appropriate weather conditions. AIF awardees are training to qualify as Wildland Firefighters Type 2 (FFT2 ) by completing 40 hours of asynchronous, online training, along with an arduous pack test and practice fire shelter deployment, prior to their prescribed-fire immersion experience. ​ Over the course of 2024, each AIF artist and writer will travel individually to participate in a Prescribed Fire Training Exchange (TREX ) or other immersive, prescribed fire experience. These immersions will take place across California, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, and Nebraska, led variously by The Nature Conservancy, the US Forest Service, the Yurok Cultural Fire Management Council, and the Watershed Research and Training Center. Returning home, AIF artists and writers will reflect upon their experiences through their creative practices and share those reflections with their home communities. ​ creative reflection & community engagement Alongside the Confluence Lab’s Stories of Fire online exhibitions , the AIF residency seeks to generate a greater public familiarity with landscape fire, one that is not catastrophic, but intentional, proactive, and participatory. It seeks to demonstrate the possibility that non-professionals can and do participate in prescribed fire, and that community fire-preparedness can encompass more than fuels reduction and home hardening. ​ Within one month of completing their immersive, prescribed fire experience, the AIF artists and writers will submit a blog post to the Confluence Lab about that experience. Within six months, the AIF participants will share creative work resulting from this experience with their home communities. Whether this is an exhibition, a reading, a community conversation, a podcast, a published piece of writing, or some other creative, public outreach, will be determined by each participant. Each AIF awardee is receiving a one-time $4000 (USD) stipend to support the time, travel, and material costs associated with the training, prescribed fire immersion, and subsequent creative work development. introducing our 2024 AIF crew Laura Ahola-Young Pocatello, ID Sam Chadwick Moscow, ID Adam Huggins Galiano Island, BC, Canada Erica Meryl Thomas Portland, OR Kylie Mohr Missoula, MT Jason Rhodes/the 181 Bend, OR Rachel Richardson Berkeley, CA Doug Tolman Salt Lake City, UT Samuel Wildman Berkeley, CA Jennifer Yu Moscow, ID This residency is in collaboration with: And made possible by the generous support of: For more information, please contact theconfluencelab@gmail.com Next

  • AIF Spotlight: Samuel Wildman | Confluence Lab

    AIF crew 2024 Samuel Wildman Berkeley, CA Samuel Wildman works in sculpture, video, and installation. As a handyman and a dad his practice is rooted in the strange and sometimes mystical bodies of knowledge embedded in the soft labor of caretakers, baby whisperers, and fixers. He describes his practice as a comfortable, home-like space that finds definition in the moments when familiarity falters. The objects and installations that he makes are inspired by the unpredictable forms that are produced when social and political absurdities appear as normalized, familiar, and home-like situations. What is an apartment full of smoke? a house full of water? The security of a public restroom? Same day shipping? Industrial ergonomics? He uses his practice to bring the depth and focus of highly disciplinary fields—like industrial ergonomics, ecology, ceramics, literature, and woodworking—into dialogue with each other under an organizing agenda of care and criticality. Born in Seattle WA, Wildman received his MFA in Art Practice from UC Berkeley, and a BFA in Sculpture from Rhode Island School of Design. He is a passionate and frequent collaborator and has received grants from 4Culture, SDOT, and City of Seattle Arts and Culture. Samuel has been awarded residencies at Ox-Bow School of Art and Artist Residency, Monson Arts, Sou’wester Arts Week, Signal Fire, MADArt, and others. He is the recipient of the 2023-24 Graduate Fellowship at the Headlands Center for the Arts, and the Outstanding Graduate Student Instructor Award. His work has been mentioned in Sculpture Magazine and his collaborative project “bevintage” was listed by Creative Capital as On Our Radar. TREX involvement More on his story in Fall 2024... but for now, Samuel is looking forward to being outside and learning about different strategies used to care for land. What excites him most is the hands-on training. He's a very visual and physical learner and having the opportunity to engage his body and senses in acts of forest management and care brings together a valuable cross section of his research, learning style, and creative practice.. Chat back to AIF residency Chat

  • Interdisciplinary Research | Confluence Lab

    introducing the Artists-in-Fire Crew of 2024 project spotlight: The Confluence Lab’s inaugural Artists-In-Fire (AIF) residency is supporting 10 artists and writers from the Pacific Northwest and adjacent regions as boots-on-the-ground participants in prescribed fire. ​ Over the course of 2024, they will travel individually to participate in a Prescribed Fire Training Exchange (TREX ) or other immersive, prescribed fire experience. Returning home, AIF artists and writers will reflect upon their experiences through their creative practices and share those reflections with their home communities. read more Our central premise is that the tools of the humanities and arts—especially those related to storytelling, representation, emotions, and communication—are important complements to scientific knowledge and can help develop novel approaches to environmental issues. We use the creativity generated through interdisciplinary and community-based approaches to partner with diverse communities on pragmatic projects that work toward more just, sustainable, and equitable futures, focusing especially on issues such as public land use, wildland fire and fire management, and the causes and effects of climate change. our primary goal who we are The Confluence Lab engages in creative interdisciplinary research projects that bring together scholars in the arts, humanities, and sciences, together with community members, to engage in environmental issues impacting rural communities. thanks to our research partners & affliates: College of Letters, Arts & Social Sciences College of Natural Resources College of Art & Architecture lab stories & news Sightlines "Just Futures" Sightlines "When the Smoke Clears" Sightlines "The Future is Patchy" read more

  • projects | the confluence lab

    LAB projects Artists-In-Fire residency Stories of Fire Online Exhibition Series Where there is Smoke... Wilderness Suite: Music, Video, & Rephotography Change in Frank Church Wilderness: Collaborative Rephotography Nature and Nuance of Climate Change Perceptions Fire Lines: A Sto ries of Fire project Stories of Fire: Pacifi c Northwest Cli mate Atlas Stories of Fire: Integrative STEM Learning through Participatory Narratives Storying Extinction: Responding to the Loss of North Idaho’s Mountain Caribou Our Changing Climate: Finding Common Ground through Climate Fiction

  • publications | the confluence lab

    LAB publications How Nostalgia Drives and Derails Living with Wildland Fire in the American West Jennifer Ladino, Leda N. Kobziar, Jack Kredell, & Teresa Cavazos Cohn, editor: Natasha Ribeiro Fire, 2022 ​ open access link Feeling skeptical: Worry, dread, and support for environmental policy among climate change skeptics Kristin Haltinner, Jennifer Ladino, & Dilshani Sarathchandra Emotion, Space & Society, v.39, 2021 ​ PDF available annual LAB reports: 2022 2021 2020 2019

  • AIF Spotlight: Adam Huggins | Confluence Lab

    AIF crew 2024 Adam Huggins Galiano Island, BC, Canada Adam Huggins is an artist, podcaster, practitioner of ecological restoration, teacher, and naturalist living in the Salish Sea of southwestern British Columbia, on Galiano Island - the unceded lands and waters of Hul’qumi’num speaking people. As an environmental professional, he implements watershed-scale ecological restoration projects for the Galiano Conservancy Association and teaches a class in the Restoration of Natural Systems program at the University of Victoria. As a storyteller and musician, he produces and co-hosts the Future Ecologies podcast, which is currently wrapping up a 5th season of long-form audio pieces at the intersection of the human and more-than-human worlds. TREX involvement More on his story in Fall 2024... but until then, Adam notes he is looking forward to this opportunity because "ecologists have hypothesized that pyrodiversity begets biodiversity. I am especially interested in the human diversity of the prescribed fire movement, and so I am most looking forward to meeting the other attendees at the TREX and learning more about who they are, where they are from, and what they hope to accomplish when they return home. " ​ Also give the podcast he produces and co-hosts a listen! Chat back to AIF residency Chat

  • AIF Spotlight: Rachel Richardson | Confluence Lab

    AIF crew 2024 Rachel Richardson Berkeley, CA Rachel Richardson is the author of three books of poetry, SMOTHER (forthcoming from W. W. Norton & Co. in 2025), and Hundred-Year Wave (2016) and Copperhead (2011), both selections in the Carnegie Mellon Poetry Series. She has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and Wallace Stegner Program at Stanford University. Her poetry and prose appear in The New York Times Magazine, Lit Hub, Yale Review, APR, Kenyon Review Online, at the Poetry Foundation, on The Slowdown, and elsewhere. Rachel received an MFA in Poetry from the University of Michigan, an MA in Folklore from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and a BA in English from Dartmouth College. Rachel is the Co-Founder of Left Margin LIT , a literary arts center in Berkeley, California, and serves on the board of the Bay Area Book Festival . She is currently Distinguished Visiting Writer in the MFA program at St. Mary's College of California. TREX involvement More on her story in Fall 2024... To Rachel, this residency offers her the chance to immerse herself in the landscape where she lives, to learn more deeply about its ecology and the risks it faces. As an artist, she loves the framing of the residency as being "in fire." She is excited for the chance to consider a "residency" as an immersion in experience rather than a retreat from it. New experience always generates new work for her, and learning about fire in particular is deeply relevant to the delicate ecosystem in which she lives, so it will help her think about human communities in relation to our place. Further, since the training is focused on sustainability, she hope this residency furthers her understanding of engaged solutions and community-building that can grow out of our climate crisis. Chat back to AIF residency Chat

  • AIF Spotlight: Kylie Mohr | Confluence Lab

    AIF crew 2024 Kylie Mohr Missoula, MT Kylie Mohr is an award-winning freelance journalist and High Country News correspondent based in Missoula, Montana. Many of her stories focus on the intersection of science, policy and people in the wildfire space. She's covered everything from how fire impacts evolution to the experience of two hikers trapped by a wildfire. Mohr also writes about conservation, lands, water, wildlife, recreation and climate change in the West. Her editorial bylines include National Geographic, The Atlantic, E&E News/POLITICO, Hakai Magazine, Deseret Magazine, CBS News, Vox, NPR, CNN and more. Mohr earned her bachelor's degree from Georgetown University and a master's degree from the University of Montana. When she's not clacking away behind a keyboard, you can find her deep in the backcountry on skis, backpacking through wildflowers, or trail running with her pup, Nuna. TREX involvement More on her story in Fall 2024... but for now, Kylie is very much looking forward to experiencing fire with her own two hands and feet. She writes, talks and thinks about fire often as a journalist covering wildfire, but fire as a force (and a force for good!) still remains abstract to her in some ways. She's excited to experience the preparation and execution of a prescribed fire viscerally, from up close, and be able to translate that experience into future reporting projects. She hope her readers will be able to tell the difference! Chat back to AIF residency Chat

  • AIF Spotlight: Erica Meryl Thomas | Confluence Lab

    AIF crew 2024 Erica Meryl Thomas Portland, OR Erica Meryl Thomas is an interdisciplinary artist, educator and labor organizer. Her work explores the ways we relate our personal histories to social, political, and natural histories. She uses the art making process to illuminate and celebrate visible and invisible labor, and visit with the darker sides of place. Her work is collaborative, site specific and often participatory, demanding flexibility of form: installations, printmaking, artist books, storytelling and dialogue, and other experiential forms among them. ​ Her recent practice has centered on the human relationship with wildfire and smoke, utilizing foraged charcoal from wildfire burn sites to produce handmade ink and printing images to tell stories of the landscapes. In 2023, she co-curated and was a participating artist in a group exhibition, Obscurity: life inside the smoke, (World Forestry Center in Portland, OR). Her printmaking and installation presented stories and images of incarcerated wildland firefighters printed with her foraged charcoal ink. The installation invited visitors to send messages to the incarcerated wildland firefighters, and concluded with a show in a minimum security prison where some of the firefighters are based.. In 2014 she received an MFA in Art and Social Practice from Portland State University where she is now a faculty member teaching interdisciplinary courses on art, design and social theory. She is the Co-Chair and Chair of Political Action for Portland State University’s adjunct faculty labor union (PSUFA-AFT local 3571), and uses her voice to create art and action in solidarity with interconnected political, social and environmental movements. TREX involvement More on her story in Fall 2024... but for now, Erica is looking forward to the physical experience of being near and working with fire, and all of the sensory elements (smell, touch, sounds, etc.) that go along with the work. She loves a physical challenge and prefers to learn through doing, so she is excited for the opportunity to be among a crew working together as a means of experiential research. Chat back to AIF residency Chat

  • AIF Spotlight: the 181 | Confluence Lab

    AIF crew 2024 Jason Rhodes /the 181 Bend, OR ( and elsewhere ) Artist collective the 181 is based in Bend, Oregon; Eugene, Oregon; and Old Fort, North Carolina. As far as they can tell, the 181 has been working together since 2007 when they found themselves gathered by the Pacific Ocean with a glim glam golden Q, roughly 10 yards of transparent lavender vinyl, and a broken hold on the sea’s reflection. The 181 is interested in composing situations that generate experiential spaces which expand, contract, or reassemble as information sloshes about. Imperfect approximations of the universe as a whole. Artists, a physicist/electronic engineer/musician, a mushroom forager/rockhound, and a former linotype operator—any attempts to formalize their practice are viewed with distress. Jason Rhodes Tom Hughes Abby Donovan Brandon Boan TREX involvement More on their story soon... but as they work through their collective expressions and Jason's boots-on-the-ground experience, here's what the 181 is most excited about: ​ Anticipating our work with the AiF Residency, we find ourselves thinking about one of the most ancient human awarenesses of fire. See that beacon on a hill, burning through the darkness What is it trying to tell us? And we wonder about commonalities and juxtapositions traced or exposed by the fire line. Thinking more on fire-line trace of travel — as in the trip of the flame and transferences Fire lines Storied lines Demarcating Befores and Afters Chat back to AIF residency Chat

  • AIF Spotlight: Sam Chadwick | Confluence Lab

    AIF crew 2024 Sam Chadwick Moscow, ID Sam Chadwick is a MFA candidate at the University of Idaho. She grew up moving around the Pacific Northwest and is looking forward to exploring this region after completing her degree in May 2024. Her frequent moves have prompted her to look for a way to connect to the places she lives through the natural world. She collects bark, charcoal, and other local plants to use for sculptural weaving and drawings. Through her interconnections of media and form, she works to capture the impacts of place. Weaving with natural fibers such as bark has allowed her to reach into the past through ancient techniques and methods, while her landscape drawings act as memory placeholders that allow the viewer to see through her eyes. She experiences land as something that fundamentally connects all people together. In all that she weaves, she welcomes the viewer to consider their environment and how it too travels with them. TREX involvement More on her story soon... ... Chat back to AIF residency Chat

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