[HEAT ISLANDS is a program with text, video and other multimedia content designed to be engaged with asynchronously. The materials are sketched out for a “4 week” session, but it can be completed entirely at your own pace. Office hours / meetings with facilitator Orchid Tierney are available for all participants. The official “start date” for Spring 2021 is 4/7, but there is flexibility.]

This workshop, open to all participants from any background at all levels of experience, will explore how poets, performers, and artists have engaged the topic of environmental emergency and hope in their works with inventive strategies that foreground racial, gender, and environmental justice. In addition to theoretical readings on global climate change, ecofascism, and climate racism, we will attend carefully to the local impacts of climate change in our own locales and consider how we can produce a radically transformative climate movement in our communities.

(Note: An earlier version of this workshop ran in the summer of 2020 but there are no requirements! It isn’t the second in a sequence, just the second iteration of Orchid leading this exploration for our community. You are welcome to take it again and/or repeatedly!)


Workshop Objectives


This is an introductory, asynchronous workshop exploring some of the key themes in climate change action. Materials and video from the facilitator are provided online for engaging with on your own schedule at your own pace, with an option to attend office hours with Orchid each week.  All texts will be made available on the website: www.offtopicpoetics.org

About the Facilitator:

Orchid Tierney is an Aotearoa-New Zealand writer, currently living in Gambier, Ohio, where she teaches at Kenyon College. She is the author of a year of misreading the wildcats (Operating System, 2019) and Earsay (TrollThread 2016), and chapbooks ocean plastic (BlazeVOX 2019), blue doors (Belladonna* Press), Gallipoli Diaries (GaussPDF 2017), the world in small parts (Dancing Girl Press, 2012), and Brachiaction (Gumtree, 2012). Other poems, reviews, and scholarship have appeared in Jacket2, Journal of Modern Literature, and Western Humanities Review, among others. She is currently writing a monograph on waste management and poetry and teaches topics on climate change and ecopoetics.  https://www.orchidtierney.com


Liminal Lab is committed to providing a source of income for our collaborators and facilitators in an increasingly precarious time for culture workers and educators. However, no one will ever be turned away for lack of fundsWe ask that those who can pay the suggested price, and/or help cover the cost of scholarship slots in each of our programs by sponsoring other participants. 

  • Compare the below to the cost for a similar accredited workshop in a university setting (where most of the $$$ goes to institutional bloat):  $1035  — we show you this so we can begin to think about wtf is happening in our institutions, where both students and faculty get the short end of the stick.
  • At a standard “Market Rate,” at arts orgs: $350*
  • Recommended Sliding Scale: $30-50/session → $180-300 for the series
  • Precarity Pricing: $10-20/session
  • Barter / Volunteer / No Cost Option Available 
  • Membership / Sponsorship: You may now become a member of Liminal Lab! Which allows you to support as well as participate in this and other programs. By becoming a member, you can also sponsor low or no fee participants in this workshop with a donation of any size.

Note: All proceeds from this workshop are being donated by the facilitator to the OS/Liminal Lab to support precarious creative practitioners and community members. 


Did you know? You can also click the link above to become a member,
or to support low and no cost participation in our programs for others!

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