By News-Register staff • 

OSU offers online series on ‘Futures with Wildfires’

An Oregon State University remote lecture series starting in January will host speakers who will discuss what living with wildfire looks like in practice, both as individuals and as communities.

“Lookout: Envisioning Futures with Wildfire” is presented by the Spring Creek Project and the Environmental Arts and Humanities Initiative within OSU’s College of Liberal Arts. The Spring Creek Project works to meld environmental science with arts and humanities to better understand the relationship between people and the natural world.

The series aims to “complicate and clarify” people’s understanding of wildfire so it’s not just something to fear, said Spring Creek Project manager Carly Lettero.

“Of course ecosystems need to burn and fire is a natural element. But we’re interested in people who are asking the question, ‘What does it mean to live with wildfire?’ It’s not an easy thing to imagine doing,” Lettero said.

The free 11-week series includes lectures by artists, firefighters, biologists and more. Prominent speakers include Margo Robbins, co-founder and executive director of the Cultural Fire Management Council, who will discuss “Climate Change and Native Knowledge” on Jan. 18; and Jaime Lowe, whose 2021 book “Breathing Fire” follows the lives of incarcerated women fighting fires in California, on Feb. 1.

The Spring Creek team started working on the series during Oregon’s devastating wildfires in September of 2020.

Organizers hope the series draws people living on the front lines of wildfire country, as well as those farther away who have been affected by heavy smoke in the air, and those who care about the ecosystems affected by fires.

The Zoom series begins at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 4 with “Art on Fire” by Bryan David Griffith and Julie Comnick, and continues with lectures at 6 p.m. every Tuesday through March 15. It is free and open to everyone but registration is required; links to register are listed on the “Lookout” website.

This series is sponsored by the Spring Creek Project and the Environmental Arts and Humanities Initiative at OSU, and co-sponsored by OSU’s Center for the Humanities, Arts and Education Complex and Sustainability Office. 


Web Design and Web Development by Buildable