conscient podcast

e90 shannon litzenberger – state of emergence : why we need artists right now

Episode Summary

This episode combines a conversation with dance artist, choreographer, director and embodiment facilitator Shannon Litzenberger on December 8, 2021 in Toronto with Shannon reading her 'State of Emergence: Why We Need Artists Right Now' essay at the Gathering Divergence Multi-Arts Festival & Conference Fall 2021 | Art in the Time of Healing: The Importance of IBPOC Arts in Planetary Renewal organized by Cultural Pluralism in the Arts Movement Ontario (CPAMO) led by executive director Charles Smith and artistic programmer Kevin Ormsby. This is the first of 6 episodes recorded at the Gathering Divergence. Photo of Shannon Litzenberger by Aria Evans.

Episode Notes

In her State of Emergence: Why We Need Artists Right Now essay Shannon Litzenberger shares her thoughts about the state of the arts and the state of artists where she hopes her perspective as an artist on the current crisis might resonate for other artists who still need to give voice to their experiences in this time of great disruption. You’ll hear Shannon read the entire 17-page essay, which is four parts: 

  1. The Alienated State of the Artist: An Emergency and a Revolution-in-the-Making
  2. From Culture as a Colonial Project to Culture as a Lever for Change
  3. Artists as World-Makers
  4. From Emergency to Emergence: Detaching from the Current System to Build the Next One

Our conversation touched upon the origins of the essay, it's intended audience, my thoughts on why it is a timely and provocative essay, precarity, empathy and Shannon’s embodiment work. 

This is the first of 6 episodes recorded at the Gathering Divergence event from December 8 to 10, 2021:

Shannon’s essay is available on Medium. For more information about Shannon's work see