Towards a non-anthropocentric aesthetics of environmental balance and change

cited authors

  • Zeigler, Eric R; Ellison, Aaron M


  • International Institute of Applied Aesthetics (IIAA) 14th International Summer Conference Aesthetics in the Age of Environmental Crises June 3–5, 2021, Lahti, Finland Call for Papers Environments and human living conditions are undergoing drastic changes both locally and globally due to human activity. We face challenges that make it difficult to live meaningful and ecologically sustainable lives. We build our identities and pursue experiences in numerous, ecologically harmful ways. In this situation, feelings of helplessness, distress, and fear are common. It seems we do not have practices for constructively sharing the burden of encountering global environmental change. At the same time, the effects of climate change have not fully reached environmental aesthetics. Philosophers have written very little on aesthetics and climate change. Aesthetic values, sensibility, and imagination are important factors for mitigating environmental problems. We need these perspectives to be able to redefine the everyday, enrich our perception, and to look for new ways of being and doing. We invite scholars, artists, and other professionals working with environmental issues to explore the role of aesthetic values and aesthetic experiences in the age of environmental crises. We call on researchers to consider the function of the aesthetic appreciation of natural and urban environments in the contemporary world. What does aesthetic sustainability mean and how does it manifest itself? How does climate change influence our aesthetic appreciation of nature and built environments? These and similar issues will be addressed during the conference. We also give the possibility to enter into a dialogue with a new performing arts project which seeks to find new ways to cope in the time of the looming ecological collapse. This interactive artwork will be exhibited during the congress. The work is produced by the religiously unaffiliated performing arts collective Ilmastokirkko (The Climate Church), which artistically explores the relationship between ecological crises and the sacred. The creation of the work can be followed in a blog ( from September 2020 onwards. We are looking for presentations of 20 minutes + 10 minutes of discussion. Depending on the Covid-19 situation, the Conference will be organized partly or completely online. We will provide further information early next year. Abstracts of 300–400 words should be sent to by 15th January 2021. The conference is organized by the International Institute of Applied Aesthetics (IIAA), the research project Environmental Aesthetics in Turmoil, and the performing arts project Ilmastokirkko (The Climate Church). The conference is supported by Lahti – European Green Capital 2021, the Lahti University Campus, and the Arts Promotion Center Finland (Taike). Contact: Noora-Helena Korpelainen, University of Helsinki,


publication date

  • 2021