Rejoice the lovers of printed matter, arts and nature. Here comes a stunning eco arts magazine and an environmental justice movement. A place to share stories, encourage activism and admire the beautiful creations from the people across the world. 

The Creator

After the age of e-books, e-magazines and e-literally-everything, the joy of holding a printed matter in your hands is a nearly forgotten sensation. It seems, though, people are reaching back to the basics of reading paper books and magazines. As well as trying to reconnect with the much-feared enigma of nature and art. Loam magazine is a one of a kind publication that encompasses both of those fields. Loam is an eco arts magazine and a thriving environmental justice movement.

Kate Weiner, the Founder and Creative Director of Loam collaborates with an incredible network of diverse artists and activists to cultivate an inspiring Instagram feed, create a biannual print publication that illuminates the stories of individuals and initiatives making waves in the environmental movement(s), and coordinates community-based workshops that explore holistic activism.

Since launching Loam in 2014, I have watched this sweet seed for a passion project grow into a thriving movement that celebrates sensuous environmentalism and intersectional activism.

Recently, Kate worked at the The Side Yard, a farm-to-table catering company in Portland, OR, as well as assisted with food waste education and events at Blue Hill Stone Barns. These experiences have affirmed her passion for cultivating meaningful experiences that help us connect both to one another and to our environment. In 2015, Miss Weimer received the Brower Youth Award for her environmental activism. Kate currently travels across the country speaking on joy-driven activism, creativity, and engaging younger generations in environmentalism.

 

The inspiration, mission and motivation

Kate is very passionate about her project: “Our print magazine is a powerful opportunity to translate our online movement into a tangible resource that our readers can refer to again and again as they cultivate environmentally sustainable lives. Designed to last and distributed at independent bookstores, botanical boutiques, and collectivist action centers across the country, putting Loam into print helps us grow our reach and deepen community investment. Loam seeks to provide a playful, collaborative, and authentic platform for exploring intersectional activism and redefining what an activist can be (and can do).”

My mission is to use my digital activism to provide diverse folks with a welcoming online space to discover how they can use their creative passions to catalyze change.

“It’s integral to my mission to share stories that confront the embodied trauma of living through climate crisis as well as to explore strategies for political resistance. To that end, it’s my goal to inspire a new strand of environmental activism that honors intersectionality, finds joy in the fight, and encourages folks to see their creative passions as the fertile grounds for a revolution.”

The How’s and Why’s

Kate first created Loam because she felt isolated by the mainstream climate movement. Although Kate has always been a steward of the earth, punch drunk in love with the outdoors and passionate about building a better world, she was frustrated by how often emphasis on policy change took precedence over personal action. Kate also struggled to make sense of the jargon that pervades the climate movement. She craved a space to explore a compassion-based breed of activism rooted in a love of beauty, community, and creativity.

  • How can a love of fashion lead to a better understanding of the environmental predation of “fast fashion” and help readers make more eco-conscious choices?
  • How can cooking sustainably strengthen friendships and communities?
  • How can you take one person’s story and use it to ignite a micromovement in your own backyard?

In short, Loam strives to solve several problems: the invisibilization of diverse voices within the mainstream climate movement; the limiting conceptualization of what an activist is; and the struggle to celebrate art as a legitimate catalyst for change.

What goes on at Loam

In Loam: Permaculture in Practice—the second print magazine— Kate partnered with artists and activists from across the world to create a vibrant exploration of what happens when we bring the guiding principles of permaculture to life in our homes, communities, and country.

For example, Kate interviewed Jocelyn Jackson, Sita Kuratomi Bhaumik, and Saqib Keval of People’s Kitchen Collective, who coordinate pop-up suppers in the Bay Area to educate their community about current social issues and inspire an appreciation for local food. By working at the intersections of art, social justice, and ecological restoration, my partnership with People’s Kitchen Collective beautifully exemplified the kind of intersectional activism that Kate strives to support through Loam.

Through my advocacy of “embodied hope”—what I call taking the active steps to practice what we preach—I’ve found a niche in an environmental movement pervaded by doom-and-gloom rhetoric.

“By weaving together photoethnographies, interviews with changemakers, DIYs to support sustainable living, and diverse essays on politics, culture, nature, and social justice, Loam strikes a balance between practical resources and philosophical meditations. Over the course of Loam’s three years, we have been home to diverse columnists such as Erica Neal, a suburban homesteader and mama of three who writes beautifully about her experience as a woman of color within the environmental movement; Mariana Rojas, a poet and wilderness guide whose stirring work melds Mexican mysticism, travelogue, and cultural criticism; and Lily Myers, a feminist writer who shares her experiences with spiritual ecology.”

For those who don’t fit in

Kate wants Loam to be an entry point into environmentalism for folks who might not feel like they fit into mainstream perceptions of what an activist is. Activism doesn’t have to only mean protesting on the street or canvassing for campaigns—that’s not how everyone finds their voice or feels their way into a sense of community.

Activism can mean using your art to inspire a conversation on climate action. It can be about creating a nourishing meal that inspires people to think deeply about where their food comes from. Opening up the definition of activism and encouraging community in all its forms can only enrich the environmental movement.

Goals and Funds

Kate is a WelkerMedia Fellowship applicant. She applied for this award because of her deep belief that the work that she’s doing to create a platform for fresh explorations of intersectional activism is necessary work.

Loam isn’t any one thing—we freely swing from holistic DIYs to political commentary in the course of a week. And to me, that’s a reflection of the diversity we desperately need to celebrate and cultivate within the environmental movement.

“I can see firsthand that Loam is making a difference in the lives of our readers and I want to nourish the opportunity to do more. My hope is to use this funding to further our reach, provide viable stipends to our creative contributors, publish a third print edition, and establish a yearlong series of Loam pop-up artist-activist workshops across the country that will help bring our digital activism to life within communities.”

The Final Word

“As the climate crisis escalates, it’s vital that we provide people with diverse entry points into embodying hope, cultivating regenerative relationships to the land, and nurturing resiliency. We need everyone to work with their community to conserve our shared home. We need everyone to be an activist.”

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