who we are
Linda Russo founded EcoArts on the Palouse in 2017 out of a desire to provide students with an immersive bioregional experience and to connect creative arts and ecological thinking. At Washington State University, she teaches and also serves as the Director of Creative Writing. She is the author of several books of poetry and a collection of lyrical essays, and co-editor of two recent books in the environmental humanities. Visit her faculty page to learn more. She spends the rest of her time listening to plants. "Almost 11 years ago I went down to the muddy Palouse riverbank and my feet sunk in, setting a course."
Alexander Jensen, Summer '20 Intern, has been communing with nature in the Palouse ever since the Palouse River near Reaney Park claimed the life of his Nokia in a fitting poetic moment. He is a Honors undergraduate at Washington State University, majoring in Psychology and English, and minoring in Queer Studies and Women’s Studies. In these interconnected fields, the natural world serves as a point of intersectionality that Alexander enjoys exploring. “It is important to back and stand behind resources and information that is quite literally grounded in our world, and to me, that is what the mission of EcoArts reflects.”
Allyson Pang, Summer '20 Intern, is a double-major in Creative Writing and Multimedia Journalism. Her hometown is Honolulu, Hawaii. She loves creating, whether it’s video editing or writing a new slam poem. At Washington State University, she is the editor-in-chief of the literary arts journal, LandEscapes, and co-president of the Palouse Poetry Society. Allyson is very excited to be in collaboration with Hannah Levy on her choreographed piece, "In the Pause" (which she edited), through EcoArts.
Lindsey Shannon, Fall '19-Spring '20 Intern, graduated from Washington State University with a major in English Teaching and an Editing and Publishing Certificate. In addition to her role as Communications Director, Lindsey undertook fieldwork and learned about the urban-wild river ecology of Missouri Flat Creek. "I was drawn to EcoArts and the exploration of Palouse edge spaces because it was something I knew very little about, and I wanted to challenge myself to be part of something outside of my literary comfort zone."
Caitlyn Smith, Spring '20 Intern, graduated from the English Department (majoring in Creative Writing) at Washington State University where she also pursued an Editing and Publishing Certificate. She worked on website design, and her fieldwork took her to local cemeteries to search for lichen. “I was drawn to EcoArts because I knew pretty much nothing about it and needed to know more. I think that it is super interesting to focus on both local art and the environment. I think it’s important to stop and look at the life that surrounds us.”
Contributing Writer Rachel Clark writes about the interconnection between humans and the planet that sustains or diminishes all Life. She is the author of The Blackfish Prophecy, and her work has appeared in Nature News Online, Psychology Today, The Revelator, Harper’s Bazaar, The Joint Fire Science Program, Salon, Mental Floss, Farmer’s Almanac, Earth & Sky Radio, Mom.me, The Dodo and more. You can connect with Rachel's work at rachelclarkauthor.com.
This project was made possible by an Arts & Humanities grant from the College of Arts & Sciences at Washington State University. Thanks from the start to collaborators in restoration ecology, in particular Kayla Wakulich. Special thanks to student interns at Washington State University who are a huge part of this project, from discussing readings and hashing out concepts, to researching local ecology, conducting fieldwork, contributing art and writing, editing, and website design: Miguel Bustos, Coleman Davis, Brianna Esqueda, Emily Heston, Darcy Malberg, Ellen McNary, Makayla North, Kathlene Roberts, Hannah Utter, and Anna Young.