The Eco Art Lab is a transdisciplinary think and do tank at the Bern University of the Arts, which aims to initiate collaborations between artistic researchers, scientists, and the public.
With regard to Sustainable Development Goals 11 (Sustainable Cities and Communities) and 13 (Climate Action), the Lab’s goal is develop and test innovative methodological approaches to ecological issues and to create mediation formats that promote environmentally conscious action.
Yvonne Schmidt, Dr., is the initiator and head of Eco Art Lab at the Institute for Practices and Theories in the Arts at the Berne University of the Arts (HKB), where she is responsible for the research field arts mediation. Having a background in theatre/performance research, her interest lies in transdisciplinary, practice-led research and formats which foster a dialogue been the arts, academia, and society. She is also a Lecturer and Deputy Head of the Institute for the Performing Arts and Film at ZHdK, the Co-President of the Swiss Society for Theatre Studies and a co-founder of the International Federation for Theatre Studies (IFTR) Working Group “Performance and Disability”. Her works have been published in peer-reviewed journals, such as RiDE: Research in Drama Education, Theatre Research International or Forum Modernes Theater. Apart from her book Ausweitung der Spielzone (Chronos) she edited a number of collections, such as the special-themed issue of RiDE International Perspectives on Performance and Disability (Routledge, 2017, with Mark Swetz and Carrie Sandahl), Theater und Öffentlichkeit. Theatervermittlung als Problem (Chronos 2012, with Myrna-Alice Prinz and Pia Strickler) or 10 Jahre IPF. Research in the Performing Arts and Film (Theater der Zeit 2018, with Anton Rey).
Benjamin Sunarjo is an artist, environmental scientist, and dancer. As a scientists, his research revolves around the social and economic transformation towards renewable energies through projects such as Smart Urban Adapt, the Energy Concept 2050 for the City of Zurich, or the Energy Perspectives 2060 for the Swiss Federal Office of Energy. As a performance artist he shows performative works at festivals, in galleries, on stages and in public spaces in Switzerland and abroad and has worked as a performer for Boris Nikitin, Tino Sehgal, Boris Charmatz, Alexandra Bachzetsis, Maurizio Cattelan, and Alexandra Pirici, among others. He curates the ACT Performance Festival at Dampfzentrale Bern and teaches as a freelance lecturer at HKB on the boundary between the arts and the climate crisis.
Tara Lasrado is an independent producer and curator particularly interested in working on experimental and interdisciplinary collaborations for diverse audiences. Since 2015 she has been active in various cultural projects in the city of Zürich including Manifesta 11, Forward Festival Zürich, «Fun & Fury» performance program at Cabaret Voltaire; and «Gemeinsam wie Bienen» as part of «About Us! Zürich Interkulturell». In 2018 Tara co-founded and curated Progetto 6000 to initiate a cultural exchange for emerging artists from Ticino in art institutions and off-spaces in Zürich. Since 2019, she is a co-producer for «under the mango tree», a self-organised gathering of “unlearning” that took place in Shantiniketan, India in February 2020 and focused on land-based learning, rural and performance practices that address our relationship to the individual and collective body. Currently Tara collaborates with the Crowther Lab, ETH Zürich creating projects at the intersection of climate science and contemporary art; as well as with Experi Theater Zürich on their upcoming projects «BlackBox», Colonial Walks and performance «Protokolle Tilo Frey» premiering at Gessnerallee in March 2021.