Teiger Foundation is committed to contributing to a just transition to a world without fossil fuels. In 2022 we began developing a climate action pilot in consultation with the nonprofit members of PACT. In part through contact with their efforts we learned more about how people in contemporary visual art can attempt to contribute to urgent climate action.
Our goal is to offer a program of tailored support for visual art curators and organizations to embed climate consciousness into both their daily operations and programmatic missions. Taking into account how scale and scope influence the climate impact of different organizations, we believe that sustainable ways of mounting projects, hosting visitors, and supporting staff and artists can be modeled, built in community, integrated into mission, and clearly and creatively communicated.
A subgroup of seven 2023 grantees will participate in our Curators’ Climate Pilot. All are recipients of our “Single Project” and “Three-Year Funding” grants and had checked a box in the application indicating their interest in participating in a climate action program. Participants were chosen by Teiger staff according to a) their project start date, to ensure enough time for integrating climate-aware actions into their work; b) with attention to geographic and project type, size, and scale distribution; and c) the stage at which a curator or organization had already arrived on their “climate journey.” The Curators Climate Pilot is primarily understood as a launchpad for organizations without climate or sustainability plans.
The Curators Climate Pilot is grantee-led. Each participant receives the services of a sustainability coach for 15 months. This coach supports the curator in developing a climate plan that is best and most appropriate for their project or organization in terms of capacity, philosophy, and communicability to their constituencies. Following the creation of a plan, each Pilot participant will receive up to $20,000 to execute that plan.
“Single Project” grantees participating in the Curator's Climate Pilot will receive support to generate and execute plans related to their funded project. Through the focus on one project, the goal is to establish a “case study” that can serve as a roadmap for change at the institutional level. “Three-Year Funding” grantees’ plans may be related to both programs or broader operations or some combination. The goal is to help staff at smaller institutions develop achievable plans that prioritize current needs and identify the necessary tools and resources to apply for further support.