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Tristen Harwood

Climate Aware Creative Practices Keynote Lecture

Thursday 23 February 2023, 5–7.30pm AEDT
Livestream or attend in person at MUMA's newly launched Education Lab, Ground Floor, Bulding F, Monash University Caulfield Campus

Free event
Register here

Join us for Monash University’s inaugural Climate Aware Creative Practices (CACP) Network Keynote Lecture ‘Sustainability is Colonialism: land trauma and settler futurity in environmentally conscious art’, presented by Tristen Harwood, an Indigenous writer, cultural critic and independent researcher, and a descendant of Numbulwar where the Rose River opens onto the Gulf of Carpentaria. How do we come to terms with the settler-colonial foundations of conservation and environmentalism in the context of art and pedagogy? To this question, Tristen will offer Indigenous and decolonial perspectives on teaching environmentally conscious creative practices.

The lecture will be held in the Monash University Museum of Art (MUMA) newly launched Education Lab. Prior to the lecture there will be a reception and exhibition viewing of Rivermouth, guest curated by Artistic Director of the 23rd Biennale of Sydney, José Roca, in collaboration with MUMA’s Charlotte Day and Francis E. Parker.

Tristen Harwood is an Indigenous writer, editor, and lecturer in Critical and Theoretical Studies at the Victorian College of the Arts. Engaged in environmental philosophy and decolonial theory, he has published internationally on art, architecture, and literature and is a regular contributor to The Saturday Paper. He is a member of the Plumwood Committee and has participated in environmentally conscious pedagogy as a student and a teacher. Tristen recently co-edited Artlink_Indigenous.

Following the lecture, a conversation will be convened by Monash Associate Dean Indigenous Dr Peta Clancy.

Climate Aware Creative Practices was recently established in the Department of Fine Art at Monash University; it is led by Associate Professor Terri Bird, Associate Professor Tara McDowell, and Dr Helen Hughes with research assistance and project coordination from Lauren Burrow. CACP aims to centre Indigenous knowledge in climate aware practice and pedagogy; foster practices that are aware of and respond to the challenges of climate change; actively participate in climate justice; and understand art’s role in contributing to both issues and solutions pertaining to sustainability (i.e. the environmental impact of art and exhibition making).

Event times

Reception and exhibition viewing, Rivermouth, drinks and light refreshments served, MUMA foyer (in-person only)

Welcome and Introduction, Associate Professor Tara McDowell, MADA

Keynote Lecture, Tristen Harwood

Conversation convened by Dr Peta Clancy, Associate Dean, Indigenous, MADA


Image: Tristen Harwood

AUDIO: Climate Aware Creative Practices Keynote Lecture

For any questions and further information including the transcript of this audio recording, please contact Tristen Harwood:


Presented by Monash Art, Design and Architecture (MADA) and hosted by the Monash University Museum of Art (MUMA).