World Water Day focuses attention on the importance of universal access to clean water, sanitation and hygiene facilities in developing countries. The day also focuses on advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources. We are sharing our recently produced poster set Wellspring.
Water is not a commodity but an inalienable right. Clean, water is the birthright of all living beings, including those with four legs, fins, and leaves. We cannot separate ourselves from the water on this planet. Just as it moves through each watershed in a revolving cycle of shapeshifting, it moves through us. We owe our very existence to the unique properties of water. The polar hydrogen bonds in water keep us connected and conscious, constantly reflecting what we focus on, whether it’s fear, joy, or love.
The designs in this portfolio do not refer to specific struggles over water. We, too, have been concerned over contamination in Flint and Jackson, shutoffs in Detroit, and droughts in California. We have learned about the Cochabamba Water War, and limitations on Palestine’s water supply by Israel. Salt water has been shed over the destruction of our wells by hydraulic fracturing, and the Pacific Garbage Patch. However, we also recognize that concerns over the safety and access to water have only just begun, and that many more communities suffering through a crisis go unreported and unaddressed.
Even though water has supported our ancestors for millions of years, we can no longer take it for granted. It’s time to think hard about what we put in water, how we use it, and where and how we live. In creating the collection of images in Wellspring, we at Justseeds hope to further the dialogue about this elemental issue. Our hope is that these images will generalize to become a useful buoy in a sea of bad news. We know that this offering is just a drop. Much more will need to be expressed as we acclimate to our role protecting our precious water sources, embodying the hydrophilic, waterloving qualities that created us.
Prints from Wellspring are being exhibited in Echame Aguas at Galeria de la Raza in San Francisco.
It is also currently on display at Commonwealth: Water for All, in the New York watershed map at the Queens Museum, in NYC.
Highlighting the urgency of the struggle for water, Commonwealth: Water For All brings together We Are the Storm and Wellspring, two recently acquired portfolios of artists’ prints developed by the Justseeds Artist Cooperative on the subjects of climate change resistance and water. This exhibition also includes a selection of materials on loan from Interference Archive which feature the now iconic graphics developed for the 2016 movement against the Dakota Access Pipeline at the Standing Rock Reservation in North Dakota. Finally, a poster production project will run through the course of the exhibition. Designs by nine additional artists addressing water and pipeline-related issues will be printed in editions of 500 on the Museum’s risograph machine. The print run of each poster will be placed one by one in the exhibition, free for visitors to take. A limited number of sets of these posters will be compiled and sold, with proceeds going to support those fighting pipeline construction in Northeastern United States.
The show includes:
*The Justseeds Wellspring portfolio
*Selections from the Justseeds/CultureStrike We Are the Storm portfolio
*An installation of No DAPL posters and protest ephemera from the collection of Interference Archive. Artists include Jesus Barraza, Christi Belcourt, Kyle Goan, Nicolas Lampert, Dylan Miner, Isaac Murdoch, Oasis Skateboard Co.’s Native Sk8 Class, Jesse Purcell, Sadie Redwing, and Ernesto Yerena
*An ongoing risograph poster project, with free posters given away to museum visitors. Posters designed by Leila Abdelrazaq, Fiona Avocado, Nanibah Chacon, Alec Dunn, Ganzeer, Jamaa al-Yad, Ali Cat Leeds, Flavia Lopez, Helen Peña, Sam Spetner, and Chip Thomas.