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Art and Energy awarded RSA Catalyst funding

The RSA has been at the forefront of social change for over 260 years, so it is a huge honour and also ridiculously exciting to have been awarded a seed grant from the Catalyst programme.

Over this Autumn, this support from The RSA’s Catalyst fund will help us to work with Ian Hankey from Plymouth’s Fab Lab and Katie Shanks from the Renewable Energy Department at the University of Exeter to test a variety of etching processes that will hopefully lead to the production of the first small solar panel artworks made in the UK.

“The panel felt that this was an interesting project with an innovative approach to design, and it aligned with the RSA and its commitment to design. The panel were excited to invest in this stage of research to catalyse this idea to the next level.” Review Panel

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Pretty Useful – Getting Creative with Solar in Plymouth – Again!

You know what solar panels look like right…. Well think again!
The inky rectangle we are all used to is about to change.
And it’s going to be changing in Plymouth.

  • Did you know that solar PV could be colourful?
  • Did you know that you can make curves and shapes?
  • Did you know the tech is fairly easy to work with?

Solar PV could be a new craft material of the future and this could give us an energy generation that doesn’t look like something out of Minecraft, but actually reflects local cultural identity.

This interactive, practical session will:

  • Tell you a bit about the options for aesthetic versatility in solar PV
  • Outline the experiments we’ll be doing with the Fab Lab in Plymouth
  • Show you examples of art and energy projects from around the world
  • Ask you to help us imagine an Art and Energy installation for Plymouth

Refreshments will be provided.

This event is free but numbers are limited and booking is essential.

This workshop will be held from 6-8pm on Tuesday 9th October at The Fab Lab in Plymouth College of Art. 

BOOK HERE

Booking is essential and the last session was booked up very quickly.

Are you interested in social or environmental justice and improving the quality of life of residents in Plymouth?

Do you want to improve your skills or help grow confidence in energy efficiency and reducing carbon emissions?

Plymouth Energy Community would like your help to make a difference.. In the last 5 years, PEC’s services to tackle energy issues and cold homes have grown significantly. They’ve helped over 12,000 households and have installed 33 community-owned solar arrays. But they want to do so much more.

Here’s more information about Plymouth Energy Community PEC Pals

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Academics enjoying Art and Energy at International Conference this September

The fourth Energy and Society Conference brought together researchers interested in the social dimensions of energy, to exchange insightful ideas and create opportunities for collaboration. 

This time the conference theme was Energy transitions in a divided world.  The theme reflected recent developments around the world that have been linked to a decline in social and spatial cohesion and cooperation: the onward march of individualism, privatisation and deregulation associated with neoliberal principles, and the rise of nationalism within and beyond Europe. The Brexit vote in the UK and the Trump presidency in the US are just two manifestations of these processes. But what are the impacts of these wider social transformations for future energy systems?

Art and Energy were delighted to be invited to deliver two workshops for 20 participants to explore what an aesthetic dimension might mean for communities, and we enjoyed the perspectives from researchers in a multitude of countries, all of who have given us their input and made suggestions for what it might mean for the future.

Some were surprised by the quantity of projects that artists are pioneering around ths world, and some just couldn’t believe they’d worked in the energy space for some long without considering art!

I was surprised by how easy and creative it is to work with solar panels and what huge benefits this creative process is to better understand the role of energy in societyparticipant, UK

The sheer existence of the idea of using solar as an art material for art was surprising. Even more so, the fact that I could be my own designer of a panel!participant, Germany

I would love to see solar tiles used as a wall covering for houses either with traditional or modern patternsparticipant, Portugal

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PEC Pals at Pretty Useful workshop in August 2018

“Art and Energy’s approach to engaging people in the future of energy is fresh and interactive. The solar workshop allowed us to get our hands on materials and be creative, making new technology less intimidating.

There was definitely excitement in the room and the ideas and collaborations look set to continue long after the event, which is vital for Plymouth Energy Community and the residents who support our work.”  

Clare Mains, Plymouth Energy Community

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Fab Lab Plymouth set to support Art and Energy through EU programme

We’re being supported by Fab Lab Plymouth through The Environmental Futures and Big Data Impact Lab (an ERDF project) to work with master glass maker and fab lab technician Ian Hankey to explore some of the technical challenges of making solar artworks.

Over the next 6 months, we’ll be exploring the potential to etch and overlay PV surfaces, combine different colour cells, metalise cells in new ways and use concentrators. This will lead to the display of works and techniques along with a how to manual for crafts people.

We are extraordinarily grateful for this invaluable support and we hope will result in useful learning that we’ll be able to share with energy managers, developers and creatives who are interested in pioneering new works with this medium.

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Art and Energy at University of Exeter’s Fourth Energy and Society Conference: Energy transitions in a divided world

Art and Energy will be running two workshop sessions at The fourth Energy and Society Conference which will take place in Exeter, UK, from 3 to 5 September 2018.  

We will be talking about the aesthetic potential for solar PV and what that might mean for communities approaches to new energy installations.

The conference aims to bring together researchers interested in the social dimensions of energy, to exchange insightful ideas and create opportunities for collaboration. They invite contributions from sociology, other social sciences and interdisciplinary networks.

This time the conference theme is Energy transitions in a divided world.  The theme reflects recent developments around the world that have been linked to a decline in social and spatial cohesion and cooperation: the onward march of individualism, privatisation and deregulation associated with neoliberal principles, and the rise of nationalism within and beyond Europe. The Brexit vote in the UK and the Trump presidency in the US are just two manifestations of these processes. But what are the impacts of these wider social transformations for future energy systems?

For more information and booking details – Click here

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School of Social Entrepreneurs supporting Art and Energy

School for Social Entrepreneurs brings together people who want to change things for the better. People tackling urgent issues like poverty, education, inequality, health, climate change and much more.

Following a rigorous application and 2 stage interview process, we were absolutely delighted to be accepted on to one of SSE’s courses and join the fellows network of incredible pioneers across the world working towards fixing some of society’s problems.

Art and Energy is still such a new company and we have so much to learn that we are really grateful to Lloyds and Big Lottery for supporting SSE to deliver this support.

We will start meeting up for training and peer support activities in September this year and the course will run for a year helping us to face all the challenges that come with being a start-up and helping us achieve our vision for city regions to have beautiful green technology that generates energy and also represents the unique culture of the place and designers working with solar PV to enhance our spaces with sustainable energy installations that local people want to live with.

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Pretty Useful – Getting creative with solar

You know what solar panels look like right…. Well think again!
The inky rectangle we are all used to is about to change.
And it’s going to be changing in Plymouth.

  • Did you know that solar PV could be colourful?
  • Did you know that you can make curves and shapes?
  • Did you know the tech is fairly easy to work with?

Solar PV could be a new craft material of the future and this could give us an energy generation that doesn’t look like something out of Minecraft, but actually reflects local cultural identity.

This interactive, practical session will:

  • Tell you a bit about the options for aesthetic versatility in solar PV
  • Outline the experiments we’ll be doing with the Fab Lab in Plymouth
  • Show you examples of art and energy projects from around the world
  • Ask you to help us imagine an Art and Energy installation for Plymouth

Lunch and refreshments will be provided.

This event is free but numbers are limited and booking is essential.

Book Here

Are you interested in social or environmental justice and improving the quality of life of residents in Plymouth?

Do you want to improve your skills or help grow confidence in energy efficiency and reducing carbon emissions?

Plymouth Energy Community would like your help to make a difference.. In the last 5 years, PEC’s services to tackle energy issues and cold homes have grown significantly. They’ve helped over 12,000 households and have installed 33 community-owned solar arrays. But they want to do so much more.

Here’s more information about Plymouth Energy Community PEC Pals

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Lampshade Making : Energy Stories

23rd July 2pm – 5.30pm

St Werburghs City Farm, Bristol

Come and join us for a hands-on discussion on what energy means for you, and how that can fall in line with what’s best for the environment. This half day workshop breaks down energy while you make. Share your energy experiences and use them as inspiration to get creative; during the session you’ll be assisted in turning your energy stories into an illustrated design to print your own fabric and craft a professionally finished drum lampshade.

You’ll walk away with a dazzling eco-reminder to decorate your home, a better understanding of the energy system in which we live, and some ideas on how you can make a difference.

Skill level: This workshop is aimed at adults and is suitable for complete beginners or experienced creatives – you’ll be guided through every step. Just come to us ready to share your experiences of living within the energy system.

Reserve a place:  goo.gl/PJe2YR,

or call/email Toni on: 07706103858/tonihankinson1988@gmail.com

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Art and Energy at the Smart Energy Marketplace

A huge Thank you to Regen and their current EU programme ZebCat which allowed our little start-up to have an exhibition at the prestigious Smart Energy Marketplace this June.

Our stand was wonderfully busy all day as we introduced people from the energy sector to the potential aesthetic versatility of materials they know and love as well as to a host of projects by other magnificent artists from around the world.

Attended by over 500 leading companies from across the clean energy and built environment sectors. Now in its eighth year, the event has evolved to provide a platform for industry experts to focus on the energy system as a whole, including energy efficiency, the gas network, electricity systems and disruptive new technologies such as energy storage and electric vehicle infrastructure. The exhibition featured leading businesses, developers, buyers, supply chains companies, professional services and communities. The exhibition was a really vibrant place for networking and doing business and we look forward to continuing conversations with new Art and Energy friends over the coming year.