Art seems to allow us humans to communicate “across the isle” and create space for conversations that might otherwise be difficult or, dare we say, impossible.
About a month ago, we began reaching out through various networks in the Twin Cities of Minnesota for an artist (or, artists) that might be interested in collaborating on a “Painting of the Bus” project to enhance the way the #StopLine3 ‘skoolie’ interacts within the community.
Macalester College Student & Graphic Designer Dio Cramer (DioCramer.com | Instagram) sent an inspirational sketch showing what the bus could look like with a beautifully simple mural illustrating two separate landscapes connected by a “Bridge to the Future”.
The first landscape, towards the rear of the bus, is filled with pollution, toxicity & extractive industry destruction. The air and water is un-pure, the trees are cut and/or dying, thick oil spills from a barrel into the waterway and dark clouds loom ominously.
The second landscape, towards the front half of the bus, shows an environment with clean water, air, trees & a couple alternative energy solutions on the rolling, green-grass hillside.
Inside the SEEKJOY community, we acknowledge that we are currently living in a time where just about everything we do as humans revolves around the complete destruction of the environment and natural world that has provided life to humans and our relatives for millennia.
We do not currently have all the answers figured for how exactly we will build and get across the “Bridge to the Future” but the only way we’re going to start moving that direction is through community action and the time is NOW!
In many ways, the Line 3 Replacement Pipeline Project is coming at a crucial juncture in the history of humankind. We have, collectively as a species, acknowledged an unprecedented worldwide crisis that will impact all of creation as we know it. We have linked this climate crisis with the extraction & use of fossil fuels and have models that illustrate the extent to which our world will change in our lifetimes even if we stop burning fossil fuels, well, yesterday.
With this in mind, what should we do? Is it all hopeless? Should we build Line 3 and pump over 870,000 barrels of Tar Sands crude oil across the Mississippi’s headwaters and through our pristine wetlands of Minnesota each day for 60+ years because we spent the last 100 years developing systems based on this outdated technology?
The #StopLine3 campaign is not a “solution” to the global climate crisis but is a difficult, rather divisive, yet necessary part of the conversation. If we build Line 3, it guarantees our trajectory towards the future depicted on the rear half of this 40 year old school bus. It is a trajectory leading down the “Scorched Earth” path which environmental activist, water protector & Honor the Earth Executive Director Winona LaDuke speaks about often.
A future of clean air, water & alternative energy starts, but does not end, with stopping the Line 3 Pipeline. If Minnesota refuses the permits and we prevent Enbridge from continuing to propel us down the path of scorched Earth, it will create the need & demand for alternative solutions. It will be the stopping of Line 3 that ultimately creates jobs for Minnesota. These jobs will be centered on alternative energy solutions, innovation & regenerative approaches to everything from the food we eat to the fuel we use for transportation.
It is our hope that this beautiful mural opens the door for conversation about the future we are creating for our children, and our children’s children, at this critical time in the human story.
If you see this bus around the Twin Cities & the greater Minnesota area, feel free to stop by for a conversation. The back of the bus, although seemingly “full” of signatures, still has open space for yours to be added.
As always, we’re sending love to all of the warriors out there making the world a better place and fighting for truth and justice. We’d like to a extend a huge thank you as well to MN350 for providing some of the art supplies to make this project a reality.
SEEKJOY is a lifestyle brand & grassroots catalyst for independent artists, activists and community organizers working towards radical social change and the sustainable cohabitation of all people, nations & cultures.
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