Permaculture Network to present two Eco Hero awards
Visionary mycologist Paul Stamets and award-winning cinematographer Louie Schwartzberg will receive the second annual Eco Hero awards from the Santa Barbara Permaculture Network on Friday at the Lobero Theatre.
The event, which has been rescheduled from an earlier date, will be from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Tickets are $20, $40 and $100 at the Lobero Ticket Office, 805-963-0761, www.lobero.com.
The Santa Barbara Permaculture Network Eco Hero Award honors individuals who have committed themselves to work in service of the planet and its inhabitants for more than 30 years, with actual solutions and concrete ways forward that benefit many, often on a global scale, while demonstrating pathways forward for future generations.
Mr. Stamets, who lives in Olympia, Wash., will receive his award via Zoom, and Mr. Schwartzberg, a resident of Los Angeles, will receive his in person.
They will share their experiences — what inspired them, how they made their projects happen and what challenges they faced along the way — with time for the audience to ask questions, especially encouraging youth attending to interact.
Film clips from their collaboration on joint projects, including the “Fantastic Fungi” film will be shown, and clips from Mr. Schwartzberg’s most recent film, “Gratitude Revealed,” will be shared.
Mr. Stamets is a preeminent mycologist in the United States and an award-winning author, researcher and renowned speaker, sharing with the public the unusual and profound connection between humans and mushrooms.
He is an entrepreneur and founder of Fungi Perfecti, a family-owned company that is collaborating with Washington State University to explore the potential of utilizing mushrooms to help save bees that are under great stress from parasitic mites and associated viruses.
“The task that we face today is to understand the language of nature,” said Mr. Stamets. ““My mission is to discover the language of nature. Fungi are the grand recyclers of the planet and the vanguard species in habitat restoration. Mycelium is Earth’s natural Internet. I believe nature is a force of good. Good is not only a concept; it is a spirit.”
Mr. Schwartzberg is an American director, producer and cinematographer, recognized as a pioneer in high-end time-lapse cinematography and a visual artist known for breaking down barriers of perception and taking viewers on journeys of time and scale.
For more than 40 years, with his studio Moving Art, his passion has been telling stories through films that celebrate life and reveal the mysteries and wisdom of nature, most recently with the conscious shifting film “Fantastic Fungi,” where once again he makes the invisible visible for his audiences.
“What is the intersection between technology, art and science? Curiosity and wonder, because it drives us to explore, because we’re surrounded by things we can’t see,” said Mr. Schwartzberg. “The sound of a million butterflies flapping their wings is indescribable. It’s very heavenly”.
He said he became passionate about nature filmmaking when he graduated from UCLA.
“One of the things I always wanted to do was shoot really high quality film, so I got into time-lapse photography, which means when you shoot a flower, you’re shooting, like, one frame every 20 minutes, so that’s basically two seconds of a film per day,” said Mr. Schwartzberg.
“Basically, the intersection between the animal world and the plant world is where life regenerates itself over and over, billions of times each day. It’s the foundation of life on our planet.
“Beauty and seduction, I believe, is nature’s tool for survival, because we will protect what we fall in love with.”
A special treat following the event will be time-lapse “Moving Art” photography projected on the outdoor wall of the Lobero Theatre, which Mr. Schwartzberg also shared with audiences at the Vatican in St. Peters Square in Rome in 2015. All can attend.
Co-sponsors of the event are Santa Barbara Permaculture Network, Blue Sky Biochar, Bamboo DNA, Teeccino, Community Environmental Council, SBCC Environmental Horticulture, Explore Ecology, Regenerative Landscape Alliance, Island Seed & Feed, Orella Ranch-Gaviota Givings, Santa Barbara Aquaponics, Sustainable World Radio, World Business Academy, The Optimist Daily, Quail Springs Permaculture, Hour Books, Mesa Harmony Garden, Wingnut Mushroom Farm, Rincon-Vitova Insectaries, Ojai Center for Regenerative Agriculture and the Santa Barbara Independent.