Collaboration helps flip the narrative on renewable energies

By Sujata Burman

It started with a conversation about resources. Teleri Lloyd-Jones, head of communication and editorial at Central Saint Martins, and Kate Keara Pelen, head of Storytelling Institute creative projects and Climate Emergency Network creative director at UAL, got together to discuss “how the climate and ecological emergency means planetary resources must be understood as finite, whereas we often look at creativity as unbridled and boundless.”

For the exhibition, ‘Human Resources: Creativity as Renewable Energy in a Time of Scarcity’, they wanted to bring attention “to the parallels between the way home and non-human resources need to be handled with care, respect and understanding”.

The exhibition brings together the disciplines within Central Saint Martins, which range from jewellery design to architecture and graphics. “Some projects move forward material innovation, others reconsider systems of production, while others might reveal worlds of thought and life already happening under our noses,” says Lloyd Jones.

She directs us in particular to the work of Julia Dotson, who is studying BA Fashion, Suksakaow Mahuttanatan, studying BA Textile Design, and Barbara Wei, studying BA Jewellery Design –all students interpret and navigate the theme in unique ways.

There’s an interesting play on words in the title of the exhibition, ‘Human Resources’. “We hope visitors will leave with a sense of the resourcefulness and ingenuity of their fellow humans, but also an appreciation of the importance of stewardship and justice in our use of material, human and non-human, resources– in creative disciplines and in all our endeavours,” says Pelen.

For Lloyd-Jones, it’s also about flipping the narrative on energy and resource, making the conversation about working collaboratively, in order to live differently – “it’s not about extracting, but contributing.