Shana Nys Dambrot
EcoJustice Radio Urban Art

Dream of a New World: Art’s Role in Societal Change


EcoJustice RadioShana Nys Dambrot, art historian and culture writer from Los Angeles, guides us through art movements in history to trace how we got here and where we are headed. We delve into the question of how environmental and climate activism intertwine with artistic expression.

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Shana Nys Dambrot
Shana Nys Dambrot, Photo by EMS.

Can we trace where Western Civilization went wrong to the 1400s when Filippo Brunelleschi, known for his brazen duomo designs in Florence, Italy, invented the linear perspective that dominated Art, Architecture, and city planning ever since? This almost-photographic perspective of the world around us translated to cities and their people being separated from nature, and the ecosystems that nourish us all. Some European painters in the early 20th Century, like Picasso and Matisse, challenged this linear perspective and were called Fauves or wild beasts. But do we need more wild beasts, rather than just bad-boy white dudes, to overcome these linear perspective machines and heal our relationship with the Earth? Are these dreams of a better world? Or something else?

“The first thing I want to know is, whose dream? Whose world? And what do you mean by better?”  — Shana Nys Dambrot

On this show, Shana Nys Dambrot, art historian and culture writer from Los Angeles’ vibrant art scene, guides us on a romp through these European art movements to trace how we got here and where we are headed. We delve into the question of how environmental and climate activism intertwine with artistic expression. Shana engages in a thought-provoking conversation about the role of art in shaping a better world, exploring the dreams and tangible enactments of new realities. Join us as we confront the big questions: Whose dream? Whose world? What does ‘better’ truly mean? This episode is not just an exploration of art, but a challenge to the status quo and an invitation to envision a future that includes everyone.

“I want to make America more like the idea that it was when it was an idea, because that was a really good idea when we had it.”  — Shana Nys Dambrot

Note: Jacques Derrida, French philosopher, referred to himself as a historian. He questioned assumptions of the Western philosophical tradition and also more broadly Western culture. Derrida called his challenge to the assumptions of Western culture “deconstruction.” On some occasions, Derrida referred to deconstruction as a radicalization of a certain spirit of Marxism.

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Related Interview:
Designing Architecture and Landscapes with Nature’s Ecological Wisdom – Carl Welty

Shana Nys Dambrot [] is an art critic, curator, and author based in Downtown LA who has been Arts Editor for the L.A. Weekly, and a contributor to the Village Voice, Flaunt, Artillery, and other culture publications. She studied Art History at Vassar College, and is the recipient of the 2022 and 2024 Mozaik Future Art Writers Prize, the 2022 Rabkin Prize for Art Criticism, and the LA Press Club National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Critic of the Year award for 2022. Her surrealist novel Zen Psychosis (Griffith Moon) was published in 2020.

Jack Eidt is an urban planner, environmental journalist, and climate organizer, as well as award-winning fiction writer. He is Co-Founder of SoCal 350 Climate Action and Executive Producer of EcoJustice Radio. He is also Founder and Publisher of WilderUtopia [], a website dedicated to the question of Earth sustainability, finding society-level solutions to environmental, community, economic, transportation and energy needs.

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Executive Producer and Host: Jack Eidt
Engineer and Original Music: Blake Quake Beats
Episode 212

Updated 24 June 2024

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One Comment

  1. Hey people!!!!!
    Good mood and good luck to everyone!!!!!

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