FRIEC: Forum for Radical Imagination on Environmental Cultures

Many voices. Greener cities. Better cities.

Welcome to FRIEC, the Forum for Radical Imagination on Environmental Cultures at The Nature of Cities, a place to build cities that nurture humanity’s relationships with urban nature through creative, cross-culture, cross-discipline collaboration.

Virtual Exhibitions

Join us as we bring to life interdisciplinary arts exhibitions that were canceled due to COVID-19. All exhibitions are supported by your generous donations.

What is FRIEC?

We are a place for radical imagination
about what cities could be,
where artists and practitioners of all backgrounds
can come together to:

collaborate with each other,
cities, and nature

challenge the framework
of established knowledge

allow new ideas for sustaining cities
across disciplines, species, and ways of knowing

imagine collaborative movements for livable,
resilient, healthy, poetic cities and regions
in partnership with nature

Recent Events

Together with global partners, we produce artist-led, interdisciplinary actions, exhibitions, residencies, and interventions in local urban landscapes.

City as Nature Festival, Osaka, Japan

Co-sponsored by The Nature of Cities and FRIEC, the inaugural City as Nature Festival took place from 11-22 October 2019 in Osaka, Japan. Featuring interactive, place-based art, workshops,…
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Featured Stories

Stories that unveil creative actions for ecological wellness
in cities and cultures across the world.

New York’s Central Park as Muse, as Imagination, as Home

A review of: Painting Central Park, by Roger Pasquier. 2015. ISBN: 0-86565-314-3. Vendome Press, New York. 197 pages. Buy the Book. For the past two years, I’ve invited people to pick free food on Swale, an edible public park built on a barge in New York…
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What the Garden Belongs To: Sensorial Listening in Urban Space

On Emily Street between 7th and 8th in Philadelphia lies the Growing Home community gardens—two discrete plots of land separated by an assortment of old and new construction rowhomes that are the architectural hallmark of the neighborhood. Chainlink fences separate the gardens from the…
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The Culture Reviews

Reviews of urban ecological arts projects in galleries and the real-world urban theater. 

Half-Earth Cities

In Half-Earth: Our Planet’s Fight for Life, published in 2016, E. O. Wilson made a reasoned and impassioned call for making our human future fit within the boundaries of just half a planet, with the other half given over to human-free nature. He reasoned…
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Finding Nature in the Walls of a Power Station

A review of Why Not Ask Again, the 11th Shanghai Biennale at the Power Station of Art in Shanghai, China, on view through 12 March 2017. It’s not unusual by any means in the contemporary art world, but as an edifice, the Power Station…
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When a Korean Hillside Town Disappears, Who will Notice?

A review of “A Local Neighborhood Traveler,” an exhibition of painting and drawing by Korean artist Se Hee Kim at the Boroomsan Museum of Art in Gimpo, South Korea. On the outskirts of Seoul, tucked away into a traditional hillside garden is the Boroomsan…
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Poetry and Fiction: The City We’re In

A curated a series of poems and fiction from around the world on themes of cities: communities, infrastructure, open space, and nature. These works are about the cities of our dreams: resilient, sustainable, livable, and just.

The Singing Air

“…as if refusing to be caught / In any singular vision of my eye / Or in the nets and cages of my thought, / They tower up, shatter, and madden space / With their divergences, are each alone / Swallowed from sight.”— Richard…
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More FRIEC Stories

Read more stories on creative actions for ecological wellness
in cities and cultures across the world

Who Takes Care of New York?

Civic leaders and community members regularly put time and energy into caring and advocating for the environment. We call these acts of care stewardship. Beyond improving green and blue spaces, stewardship can also lead to other types of civic action. Local stewardship groups can…
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SALT: Restoration + Recreation = Water in California

It is late June and we are up to our knees floating a small tent sculpture in a containment pond filled with a thick green milkshake-like goo. A combination of duck week and blue-green algae (cyanobacteria), this overgrowth or bloom is probably caused by…
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