Creative Contributors

The creative programme for this conference has been organised by Dr Freya Garry and Dr Tom Powell.


Pop up Gaia Cabaret with Peter Horton – throughout the conference 

Gaia Cabaret comprises songs, sketches and surprises celebrating the world view of Gaia Theory, and was originally commissioned for James Lovelock’s 90th birthday. Check out for more information. 

Over the past 30 years Peter has worked as a lecturer in Theatre Studies and Communication Skills, and as a Theatre Workshop director in schools, colleges and the community. He is a musician and performer and writes various musical theatre pieces for young people, including ‘Ossie and the Thwartz’, which is published by Chester Music. His song ‘Juggins Lugger’ won the WWF folk song competition in 1991. 

Peter has been researching Gaia Theory and its implications for the past 30 years, working closely with James Lovelock, Dr Michael Whitfield, former Director of the Marine Biology Association of Great Britain, and Professor Tim Lenton at the Global Systems Institute, University of Exeter.  


‘Climate Stories’ music with Rosie Eade – on arrival and at open mic night 

Rosie Eade Folk-Pixie – “One of the loveliest new voices on the folk and acoustic music scene” (Village Pump Folk Club, 2013). Inspired by Kate Bush and The Who as much as Steeleye Span, Rosie sings life inspired stories written over many years gigging solo around the country, from a party in a field to Glastonbury’s Avalon Café, arranged around her love of folk, rock and thrashing her old guitar. This dual passion shines through in her new album “Battlestorm“, telling of the many battles and conflicts, emotional and physical, faced in our modern and historical lives; heartfelt tales brought to life by Rosie and her band mates. 

Rosie was a songwriting lead on the ‘Climate Stories’ project where she explored writing songs about climate change with scientists and singer-songwriters, some of which will be performed at the conference. The ‘Climate Stories’ project started in May 2018, when climate scientists from UK Met Office and the University of Exeter spent an inspirational three days under the lead of artists from the disciplines of creative writing, theatre making, print making and song writing. Through hands-on workshops the scientists were introduced to the narrative possibilities of each art discipline, both for their own creative development and with a view to using them in their outreach work as climate scientist. Participants then chose their favourite arts discipline(s) to take forward into a series of collaborative workshops with community groups in and around Exeter, which produced a stunning variety of responses to the challenges of climate change, through a process of non-hierarchical co-creation. The results have been published in a book, a dedicated web site and YouTube clips. Climate Stories enabled the public, artists and scientists to co-develop new creative approaches to explaining and dealing with environmental change, and the project has wider relevance both geographically and in subject matter, as a blueprint for the development of more effective public engagement skills in the wider science community. As well as music during opening, we will have information about Climate Stories in the poster hall, and we invite you to join us and share your stories about climate change at the ‘Earth’ themed open mic night, and tweet your drawings, creative writing, or voice recordings to @StoriesClimate. 


‘Earth’ themed openmic night at City Gate hosted by Rosie Eade and Freya Garry –  Monday 20:00  – 22:00

We will start with some music from the ‘Climate Stories’ project and Peter Horton will join us with a ‘Gaia Cabaret’ contribution. Please come join us and bring your own music, poetry or sketches! Let Freya know you are keen to take part at or just turn up. This event will also be open to the public.  


Morning run with Tim Lenton and Tom Powell on Tuesday 07:00 

Join Tim Lenton and Tom Powell for a gentle run at 07:00 on Tuesday 30 July. For all abilities, this will last approximately 45 minutes taking in some of the greener parts of Exeter.

Delegates eager to start the day with some fresh air are welcome to join Tim and Tom as they demonstrate an activity created by eco-social artist Anne-Marie Culhane to explore ‘the relationship between humans, trees, carbon dioxide & the changing climate starting from our own breath.’  The run was conceived by Anne-Marie with advice and support from Tom as a novel way of introducing members of the public to Earth system concepts such as the carbon and oxygen cycles. What better way to explore our own participation in these global cycles than getting a little out of breath?

The run will start at 07:00 in two locations, Tom will start from outside Holland Hall on the Streatham Campus and for those staying in Exeter city centre Tim will start from outside the Southgate Hotel. Both groups will join together during the run. This activity is open to anyone on the day, and we would welcome indication of potential interest in advance by email to to give us an idea of numbers.


Willow working with Jane Thomasson of Wych Willow on Tuesday 16:30 – 18:00

Conference attendees will have the opportunity to get out of their heads and into their hands and work some willow with Jane Thomasson. Jane is a Permaculture design teacher and has used her skills to design and develop a 5ha smallholding in south west France. She grows willow and coppices hazel for basket making and creating willow structures. 


Living System Games with Robin de Carteret on Tuesday 16:30 – 18:00

Led by Robin de Carteret, an educator, facilitator and consultant is an educator, facilitator and consultant. Using experiential techniques from performance improvisation, systems games and nature connection activities he introduces thought-provoking concepts from complexity science, Biomimicry and systems thinking.

In this session we will bring to life concepts from complexity theory and Earth systems science using interactive simulations and inspiring film clips. You’ll get to experience the dynamics of self-organisation, emergence, feedback loops and tipping points through tangible modelling activities. In a complex and unpredictable world where linear thinking and ‘predict and control’ are increasingly unfit for purpose, we’ll explore a shift in mindset towards understanding and participating in the living systems we are part of. If we can’t always plan and control, how can we act effectively? We’ll finish the session with activities that develop skills in spontaneity, responding skilfully in the moment, and creating a space for emergent, collaborative creativity.


Deep Time Walk with Stephan Harding on Tuesday 16:30 – 18:30

Led by Dr Stephan Harding, head of holistic science at Schumacher College.

Deep Time Walk is a journey through the 4.6 billion year history of the Earth. Travelling 4.6km, each metre walked will represent a million years of Earth history, offering a unique insight into the evolution of Gaia through time right up to the emergence of Humankind. The walk will give an opportunity to explore the University of Exeter’s beautiful campus, and time to reflect on themes being discussed during the conference.

This option is limited to 30 places on a first-come, first-served basis – conference attendees will receive an email with details of how to do this. Please be aware that the walk will use footpaths and wear appropriate footwear, and come suitably equipped for the weather conditions on the day. The walk will take a little over 2 hours and will return shortly before the evening drinks reception.


Professor Andy Watson and Clothyard Angels – Post dinner entertainment Tuesday evening 

Clothyard Angels are a band from the West Country playing electric music. They take inspiration from the folk tradition, Irish and Scottish fiddle tunes, the folk revival of 60s and 70s, and their own material. Andy Watson is part of this 5-part band, playing guitar and mandolin.


Banco de Gaia

Banco de Gaia, a mercury prize nominated musician, will be attending the three days of the conference and creating a special composition celebrating the work of James Lovelock and responding to the themes discussed during the event. Banco de Gaia will be collaborating with video artist Peter Dunn to create an original piece which will be performed after the public panel discussion event hosted by Agile Rabbit on the evening of Wednesday 31st July at the Exeter Phoenix. The evening will continue with Banco de Gaia playing a DJ set in the bar, providing the soundtrack to continued discussions. The Ages of Gaia piece created especially for the conference can be viewed below.

Visual art by Glynn Gorick  

Glynn Gorick is a freelance graphic and animation artist with a science teaching background. Glynn has produced contributions relating to Gaia especially for this conference, and these will be on display throughout the conference. 


Images from the Lovelock Collection (Science Museum)  

The Science Museum are kindly allowing the Lovelock Conference to use images of material from their archive, which will be displayed throughout the conference. More information about their archive can be found here.


Paintings by Erica Nockalls  commissioned by the Helix Project

Standard methods for disseminating scientific information tend to hit the same audience. The HELIX (High End cLimate Impacts and eXtremes) project commissioned artist Erica Nockalls to reach out to new audiences with her interpretations of climate change.

Erica Nockalls is an English violinist, vocalist, songwriter and visual artist. She is best known as violinist in The Wonder Stuff, as one half of acoustic duo Miles Hunt and Erica Nockalls, and as a live fiddle player for The Proclaimers. Nockalls is lead vocalist, violinist and guitarist in her art-rock band, Erica Nockalls.

Glastonbury Festival. What could Glastonbury look like in 2070?

Glastonbury, Britain’s largest and most famous music festival, is a great symbol of the many faces of the global climate change debate. It’s full of people enjoying life and relying on technology, easily available energy and consumer goods, yet it’s also deeply rooted in environmental and social justice concerns. And, of course, it’s also hugely exposed to extreme weather. If the party is to keep going, can all these be reconciled? What will it look like in the future – will it need to adapt to survive? 

Climatic events.

Erica’s impression of two significant events that have happened in the lifetime of HELIX: Hurricane Irma and the cracking of the Larsen C ice shelf in Antarctica to form one of the largest icebergs in recent history (both events occurred in 2017).   

Drua on a stormy sea.

Drua is a traditional Fijian boat, the symbol of the United Nation’s climate change conference, November 2017.


Video exhibition featuring:

‘Gaia-graphy’ by Alexandra Arènes

Climate Stories

Symbiotic Earth: A film about Lynn Margulis

Past Invisible from the Invisible Worlds exhibit at the Eden Project

Planetary Trajectories – Tone Bjordam & Marten Scheffer


Podcasts with Rebecca Pearce 

Rebecca Pearce is creating a series of conversational-style podcasts to celebrate the Lovelock Centenary with some of the conference speakers and attendees. Podcasts are available to listen to here, and will be shared via the website/social media as they are released, some ahead of the conference so keep your eyes peeled! These podcasts are accessible to a general audience and will discuss the subject of the conference speaker’s planned talk, and how it relates to Gaia. They may also include conversation about a speaker’s career (Life Scientific style).  

Dr Rebecca Pearce is an Environmental Scientist, Human Geographer and trained Science Communicator. Her deliberately slow method of research combines Classic Grounded Theories, Oral Histories, and archival research, to identify how communities might ‘un-learn’ unsustainable habits and dependencies associated with commodified natural resources (water/energy/food).  Rebecca is currently a contributor to the UK Drought and Water Scarcity Programme for which she produces an occasional podcast series based on her extensive collection of oral histories of droughts. If you are speaking at the conference and would like to be involved and recorded for the podcasts, please get in touch with Freya Garry (