THE VISION OF AN ACCIDENTAL ACTIVIST
He didn’t plan on becoming an activist. But after receiving degrees in science and engineering, UNM Art and Ecology Professor Subhankar Banerjee became a self-taught artist, writer and scholar, and his images have captured international attention. Banerjee’s powerful art and activism have contributed to defeating or slowing down oil and gas development in some of the bio-culturally significant places in Arctic Alaska, including the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Teshekpuk Lake wetland, as well as the Beaufort and Chukchi seas.
Banerjee coined the term “long environmentalism” to draw attention to environmental justice engagements that last not merely weeks or years, but decades, and become inter-generational. And he’s proven that art can have a powerful and lasting impact.
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Pictured top: Banerjee’s photo of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska. Pregnant female caribou from the Porcupine River herd migrate over the Coleen River in the Arctic Refuge on their way to the coastal plain for calving.