The International Academy for Natural Art
When the four initiators of this international network from the Netherlands, Italy, France and Japan met, we immediately discovered the connection in what each one had been advocating in his or her own ground.
We decided to call this initiative the International Academy for Natural Art, for even though our methods and approaches varied, there was a common thread – an urge to learn with an Academic attitude, to express what we learned via the medium of Art, and then share what we find with others. In doing so, our focus was always on the human relationship with Nature.
We discovered that we were each learning through organising artistic programs that, by focusing on the idiosyncratic heritage, art and craft of a specific culture, you eventually touch the common ground of human nature.
In this time of anthropocene, where the exponentially growing and globalized human activities are resulting in the inadvertent consequences on this planet, we feel the significance of once again focusing on the versatility of human culture.
Every culture is unique and rich in its own context. And through learning about one culture, we reach the awareness that they are all the same in essence. That is, artistic expressions, traditional heritage and kinds of craftsmanship of a specific culture, are the reflections of human activities in correspondence with the environment.
They are the traces of how humans have tried to create adapting to the environment, for human lives are inseparably reciprocating with the surrounding beings.
Our study approaches may be anthropological, historical, scientific, and comparative culture. Our tools of expression may be culinary art, performing art, graphics, narratives and participatory programs.
Although the methods and forms may be different, all four of us have been in the same quest of finding human connections with nature.
Now, we form a network and work together.
We will start by focusing on the four areas of our home grounds – Italy, France, the Netherlands and Japan – to learn about one place at a time with four different approaches.
Through interacting during the artistic and academic programs, we hope to learn and share the understandings of how different and unique our cultures can be, and ultimately, how they are all the same.
We call it the International Academy, because we want to share globally the process of learning and the wisdom to be found that all humans are connected in their roots deep under.
Michele Losi, Rioko Baba, Sjoerd Wagenaar
Calendar of activities 2021-23

CAMPSIRAGO: 5 – 14 november 2021, study activities, tea ceremony
UKHIA: october 2022, study activities and workshops
CAMPSIRAGO: 10-18 may artistic residency at Campsirago; 19-21 may 2023 Japanese Art Experience at Campsirago
UKHIA: october – november 2023, production activities Just walking

Photos by Alvise Crovato