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The Sustainable Darkroom

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Manifesto

Welcome and thank you for looking.

Firstly, it is essential to define our understanding of the word sustainable and its usage herein. It is a word whose meaning has shifted and moved since this project began in 2019.

Sustainable Def.
To contribute to a world fit for future generations to inhabit. This encompasses sustainable relations between humans, as well as non-humans, within an ecosystem that entangles in social, political and economic dimensions.

The Sustainable Darkroom is committed to exploring sustainability and its nuances within the photographic spheres, to develop an industry-specific response to the global ecological crisis. As habitat loss, species extinction, ocean acidification, industrial toxicity, environmental racism and more continue to mount - it is essential that we transform our material relationships, in view of a sustainable future.

We will continue to evolve with new knowledge and research, so that we are able to provide up-to-date and essential information, resources and support to practitioners that wish to approach their own photographic practice in a more ecologically-conscious way.

Our aim is to transform the approach to photographic materials and their historically toxic nature, prioritising ecological balance.

We intend to fulfil this through:

Accessibility - Seeking private and public funding to subsidise educational workshops. Working with low cost and/or freely available materials where possible.

Inclusivity - Working with people across all cultures, identities, races, religions, geographies and economic classes. - Including as many systems of thought as possible; non-western philosophy, decolonial and queer ecology, neuro-diverse and feminist theory for example. - Encouraging and helping facilitate freedom of expression by spreading acceptance and kindness.

Transparency - Researching and making ecologically informed decisions across all platforms, resources, third parties that we work with. - Explicitly stating what parts of our work have been funded and by whom.

Good Practice / Care - Thinking through sustainable relations between humans, and non-humans and inanimate bodies within photography. - Valuing our natural resources and considering their essential role in the balance of ecosystems. - Recognising ecological and climate justice as racial, social and economic justice.

Sharing our ethos - Supporting, doing and facilitating pioneering research. - Helping to create senses of community, and empowering individual makers, does, thinkers and creators. - Collaborating and sharing with other communities and organisations that share our pursuit.

Hannah, Alice and Edd: The Sustainable Darkroom developers