Dr. David Abram
Dr. David Abram, cultural ecologist and geophilosopher, is the author of Becoming Animal: An Earthly Cosmology andThe Spell of the Sensuous: Perception and Language in a More-than-Human World. Hailed as "revolutionary" by theLos Angeles Times, as “daring” and “truly original” byScience, Dr. Abram’s research has helped catalyze the emergence of several new disciplines, including the burgeoning field of ecopsychology. His work engages the ecological depths of the imagination, exploring the intertwined ways in which sensorial perception and language inform the relation between the human body and the breathing earth. David is a recipient of the international Lannan Literary Award for Nonfiction, and has received fellowships from the Rockefeller and Watson Foundations: his essays on the cultural causes and consequences of environmental disarray can be found in numerous journals and anthologies. David recently held the international Arne Naess Chair in Global Justice and Ecology at the University of Oslo. Co-founder of the Alliance for Wild Ethics (AWE), he lives with his family in the foothills of the southern Rockies.
Despite having grown up in land-locked Ottawa, Canada, Laura Bridgeman has always harbored a fascination for cetaceans. After obtaining her degree in Geography and Environmental Studies at the University of Ottawa, she found her way to San Francisco where she currently holds a position with the Earth Island Institute’s International Marine Mammal Project as their Campaign & Communications Specialist. Sonar is a continuation of her work at the institute, and is a reflection of her life’s pursuit to inspire people into thinking differently about other-than-human life.
Dr. Donal Carbaugh
Donal Carbaugh is Professor of Communication at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, USA. One of his favorite courses to teach is titled, the communication of nature which examines both what humans have to say about nature as well as what nature says to us. His cultural perspective on these matters brings into view local ways of living within natural environments; his field studies have focused on such ways in his own life, among indigenous people in Montana, in Finland, and elsewhere.
Ari Conterato is a graduate student in sociocultural anthropology at the University of California, Davis. His research interests center on questions of design, aesthetics, and ethics with regard to the production of wilderness/wild places/nature: how are wildernesses designed, why, for whom, and what are the stakes? Recently, he has been researching the networks of diverse people involved in rewilding, whether directly through active practices, indirectly through management, funding, supplementary scientific practices, and finally, through people involved in the political stakes of wilderness and wildlife conservation (specifically, in this case, with scent-dog hunting in England). He supplements this network-oriented research with more traditional ethnographic engagement with rewilding sites and their inhabitants and through the development of experimental ethnographic practices for collaborative multispecies storytelling.
Hector Contreras Lopez
Héctor Contreras López is an independent poet, writer, translator and educator based in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He got his MA in Spanish American Literature from the New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, and has published poems, short stories and essays both in Mexico and the United States. The Chihuahua Culture Institute published his two books of poetry: Memoria de la piedra (Memory of the Stone, 2006) and El árbol de la aurora (The Tree of Dawn, 2011). He is the coordinator of the Ricardo Aguilar Translation Workshop, which since 2015 has worked with Professor Theo Walker and his students at the Spanish Department, UNM, to translate the poetry of New Mexican poets from English into Spanish. This semester, the workshop is going to be also in Chihuahua, where with the participation of Professor Erbey Mendoza and his students at the Facultad de Filosofía y Letras, Universidad Autónoma de Chihuahua, the workshop is going to make Spanish versions of Old Norse poetry based on English translations. This activity is the first among several which form the program Islandia entre nosotros (Iceland among Us), designed by Contreras López to make available Old Norse poetry to students in Chihuahua city, from elementary school through college.
Dr. Toni Frohoff
Dr. Toni Frohoff, Ph.D, is a behavioral and wildlife biologist who has been studying marine mammal behavior and communication for over 30 years. Dr. Frohoff specializes in communication, psychology and wellbeing of captive and free-ranging dolphins. She was co-editor of the anthology, Between Species: Celebrating the Dolphin-Human Bond (Sierra Club Books, 2003) and Dolphin Mysteries: Unlocking the Secrets of Communication (2008, Yale University Press), and has contributed chapters to over a dozen books. She also lectures widely, including The Smithsonian Institute and TED Global Conference in Oxford.
Dr. Frohoff's work for government and non-profit agencies has contributed to the revision and implementation of management and legislation protecting marine mammals in captivity and in the wild in more than a dozen countries. Her research is frequently featured in the media (including a New York Times Magazine cover story, Santa Barbara Magazine, NPR, Smithsonian, Discovery Channel and Time magazines and Animal Planet and National Geographic).
She co-founded the newly-formed POD (Protect Our Dolphins) in Santa Barbara, California where she lives and has co-founded the Terramar Research Institute of Learning where students study new and emerging fields of science such as Interspecies Psychology and Ecology and engage in Wild Wisdom.
Sonia Levy is a French artist living between London and Iceland.
After graduating from Villa Arson, École des Beaux–Art de Nice in France, she undertook a post- graduate course at École Nationale Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs in Paris. In 2016 she took part in a programme in arts and politic (SPEAP) at Sciences Po in Paris, led by professor Bruno Latour.
Her practice operates at the intersection of the art and the sciences (natural and social), and focuses mainly on the nonhumans – nonhuman animals, landscapes and inorganic others. The works (installations, sculpture, drawings and video pieces) traverse the nonhuman realms to register the feeling of being surrounded by others or more abstractly by otherness; to present the spectator with a space where ‘nature’ becomes ‘culture’.
She is currently developing an artistic research in Iceland, looking at different aspects of whales and humans relationship in the controversial territory of the Arctic.
Dr. Tema Milstein
Dr. Tema Milstein (PhD, University of Washington) is an associate professor of Environmental/Ecocultural Communication at the University of New Mexico (USA). She examines ways communication as a cultural force closes and opens doors to the re/articulation of human relations with/in/as nature. Her award-winning ethnographic and qualitative research includes examinations of cultural environmental meaning systems, ecotourism and endangered wildlife, climate crisis activism, culture jamming, and ecopedagogy. One of her long-term international studies focuses on oceanic ecotourism around whales and dolphins. Milstein is her university’s Presidential Teaching Fellow, lead editor of Routledge’s forthcoming book Environmental Communication Pedagogy and Practice, and author of “Greening Communication” in Greening the Academy: Ecopedagogy through the Liberal Arts. She recently completed a Visiting Fellowship at University of Tasmania in Australia and being a Visiting Scholar at University of Hawai’i Manoa. Dr. Milstein has taught at universities in the United States, Europe, and Asia and serves on several academic journal editorial boards. You can read her research athttps://unm.academia.edu/TemaMilstein/ and join the conversation in her Ecocultural Communication Facebook group athttps://www.facebook.com/groups/428111227269773/.
Elizabeth Oriel works at the intersection of human and marine mammal lives, looking at interspecies communication, examples of successful cohabitation or sharing seascapes, and understanding the nature of wellbeing in other species. With a degree in Russian Language and Literature from Wesleyan University and a Masters of Science in Conservation Biology, she tends towards interdisciplinary projects joining science, social science and art. She has written on expanding definitions of wellbeing for marine mammals, non-human personhood, and successful cohabitation among humans and predators. She's currently working on a book about dolphin/human communities on Ireland's west coast, and writes fiction and poetry. She works for Sonar.
Dr. David Peat
Peat obtained hisPhD fromthe University of Liverpool in 1964 and taught at Queen’s University, Canada before joining the National Research Council of Canada. His research focused on the theory of density matrices and solid state physics. Following sabbaticals with David Bohm and Roger Penrose he worked on the foundations of quantum theory and became a colleague and collaborator with David Bohm. Together they co-authored “Science, Order and Creativity” and were working on a second book “The Order Between and Beyond” at the time of Bohm’s death.
In addition to his work at the National Research Council of Canada Peat has been Distinguished Visiting Scientist at John Hopkins University, taught at Carleton University, Canada, was a member of the Foresight Group of the Science Council of Canada and has been Chair of Division of Theoretical Physics for the Canadian Institute of Physics. He is an Adjunct Professor at California Institute of Integral Studies.
With Leroy Little Bear, Peat has organized a series of dialogues between Native American Elders and Western Scientists.
In 1996 Peat moved to the medieval village of Pari in Tuscany where is created the Pari Center for New Learning. He is the author of over twenty books plus many articles in refereed journals, magazines and conference proceedings. Peat offers a number of residential courses at the Pari Center each year. In addition he organizes a series of International Conferences at the Center. Peat has also hosted a series of talks on the relationship between science and religion and the Center was three times winner of the Metanexus Prize for Excellence in Programming.
Maggie Siebert is a dancer, yoga instructor, and doctoral candidate at the University of New Mexico. Her scholarly work delves into the relationships and intersections of health, the environment, and culture through our cultivation, consumption, and creation of food.
Bryndis Snæbjörnsdóttir and Mark Wilson
Bryndís & Mark are a collaborative artist team, whose art practice is research based and socially-engaged, exploring issues of history, culture and environment in relation to both humans and non-human animals. Their artworks have been exhibited internationally and they have delivered papers at key conferences in animal studies worldwide. One of their art projects nanoq: flat out and bluesome an artist survey of stuffed polar bears in the UK has toured widely in Europe since 2006 and is now together with the research/process archive for this project part of international museum art collections.
Uncertainty in the City, an art project exploring the conception of ‘pest’ in the human psyche was exhibited in the Story Gallery in Lancaster, (2010) and a publication with the same name was published by Green Box, Berlin (2011). Their work Vanishing Point: Where Species Meet was part of the Gothenburg Biennial (2011) and was also exhibited at the State Darwin Museum in Moscow as part of the 5th Moscow Biennial (2013). The project between you and me was exhibited at Kalmar Konstmuseum (2010) and at Interactive Futures '11: Animal Influence, in Vancouver, (2011). A solo exhibition Trout Fishing in America and Other Stories opened in Arizona State Museum of Art (2014) in Phoenix and a publication You Must Carry Me Now: the Cultural Lives of Endangered Species was released at the SLSA conference in Houston, Texas (2015). In 2016, they exhibited the first part of their research project Matrix series #1 as part of ‘Polarlab’ residency with Anchorage Museum, Alaska and in april 2017 their research as part of the three year cross-disciplinary project Beyond Plant Blindness concluded with site specific installations in the Botancial Garden in Gothenburg. Currently they are continuing to work with Anchorage Museum on their Matrix series and they are developing a project for the David Winton Bell Gallery at Brown University, Providence, US for 2019. Their work is installation based, using text, sound, photographic and video-based media.
Bryndís and Mark have contributed a chapter; Feral Attraction - Art, becoming and erasure to the recently published Handbook of Animal Studies edited by Dr. Susan MacHughes and Dr. Garry Marvin (Routledge 2014). They were Research Fellows at the Centre for Art + Environment, Nevada Museum of Art (2013-2015). Mark is a Professor at the University of Cumbria and Bryndís is a Professor and MA programme director the Iceland Academy of the Arts. For more information on their work see: