Talks and discussions

Most of the talks, walks, workshops and performances happening at Base Camp are now uploaded. Do have a look!


Land Literacy and Farming at the Edge of Extinction with Molly Campbell, Cate Chapman and Chris Smaje

Emerging shoots from ‘A Field of Wheat’, a collaborative project between artists Anne-Marie Culhane and Ruth Levene and farmer Peter Lundrren in Lincolnshire

Monocultures of the field have typically gone hand-in-hand with mono-cultures, a de-storying of the world and the land we inhabit. The global 21st century is no exception, with its food supply in a crippling paradox. In the overdeveloped world, with the number of agricultural workers dwindling in places to around 1% of the population, food growing has never been more distant. Yet, simultaneously, a growing global population is deluged by economically cheap and abundant calories as never before, obtained through cultural subjugation and fossil fuels.

In this mostly-urbanised world, how can we forge intimacy with the land? Which stories of land connection hold us in good stead in a time of crisis? And which paths are trodden by those at the edge; the edge of urbanity, of civilisation, and of capitalism?

Divergent field experiences in these most earthly of questions will be discussed by Cate Chapman, poet and managing director of the pioneering Ecological Land Co-operative, Chris Smaje, farmer, writer and blogger at Small Farm Future, and Molly Campbell, a US-based regenerative and indigenous food systems advocate. Camp-goers are encouraged to bring seeds and stories to share.


19 Warren Draper_Blackboardr
‘The Sum of All Knowledge’ from ‘Love & Entropy’ by Warren Draper (Dark Mountain: Issue 8)

After School: Escaping the wreckage of education with Keri Facer, Dougald Hine and Ben Vickers

In the grand narratives of progress that still fuel a cornucopia of
TED-talks, ‘education’ is an apple pie word, a word whose virtue is beyond question. Yet there are worms in the apple: we inhabit a world of lifelong learning in knowledge economies built on subprime student loans and unpaid internships and lecturers whose zero-hour contracts leave them locked out of libraries.

What can be salvaged from the mess our education systems are in? Where are the pockets, inside or outside of existing institutions, that can inspire us? What can we learn from the successes and failures of recent attempts to create alternative spaces for learning?

Dougald Hine is co-founder of Dark Mountain, Keri Facer is Professor of Educational and Social Futures at Bristol University, Ben Vickers has been involved in starting projects like The Temporary School of Thought and the unMonastery.


the unfathomable language
The Unfathomable Language by Rima Staines

The Council of Mothers with Rima Staines

Profoundly shaken by the experience of becoming a mother in a culture that does not respect motherhood, artist Rima Staines sought to explore this experience through a series of paintings. These images will form the backdrop to The Council of Mothers – a space for the voices and stories of mothers to be heard by all those in attendance who listen.

In a time of fragmented community, we will attempt to reassemble some of the hearth stones of our broken village by re-honouring the women who are birthing and raising our children.

All are welcome.

Rima Staines is an artist and mother of a young son. She lives and travels as part of Hedgespoken ‘a vehicle for the imagination’ with Tom Hirons. She uses paint, wood, word, music, animation, clock-making, puppetry and story to attempt to build a gate through the hedge that grows along the boundary between this world and that.