Climate Migration, Anthropology, Human Rights

an exhibit at Rice University Solar Studios
November 4, 2022 to January 11, 2023

featuring work by Willow Naomi Curry, Ginger Jeudy, Danny Russo, Ukombozi Fellows Chelsy Aledia, Nia Buckley and Kennedy Henderson and oral histories from Sandra Edwards, Walter Mallett, Dolores McGruder, Vivian Mcklevy, and Joetta Stevenson

Opening Reception and Conversation
Friday, November 4, 2022, 6:30 - 9:00pm

7:00 - 8:00 PM a reading and conversation with author
Kathryn Savage and Houston-based writer and artist Willow Naomi Curry

HCJM Contributors: Aaron Ambroso, Willow Naomi Curry, Sarah Davidson, Noura Jabir, Tiffany Jin, and Skyler Smith

John Doe

Aug 17

The Houston Climate Justice Museum & Cultural Center presents “Creosote Stories: Seeding Planthroposcenes in Northeast Houston,” at the Rice University Solar Studios. An opening reception will take place Friday, November 4th from 6:30-9:00pm, accompanied by a reading and conversation with author Kathryn Savage and Houston-based writer and artist Willow Curry from 7-8pm. 

Creosote Stories invites visitors to explore the legacy and future of the creosote plume in Northeast Houston through the different narratives that made the wood-preserving industry possible. Tracing the story of how the industry developed in the American South takes us to the expansion of commercial logging and the closing of the frontier, the USDA Forest Service that in large part was developed to conserve forests out of economic concerns, and the pseudo-science of race and the African American labor that was used to treat railroad ties.

The first study linking creosote to cancer was documented in 1775: through the reconstructed room of an 111-year-old resident of Northeast Houston, the exhibit highlights the oral histories and present-day struggle between local community activists and the financial interests of multinational companies. Another room questions the role that institutions, governmental agencies, and philanthropic foundations have played in keeping the general public in the dark about the health impacts of the wood-preserving industry. As Northeast Houston residents grapple with the contamination and ongoing legal battles, they lead us to consider questions that get to the heart of our environmental crisis: How can we hold vested interests accountable for the slow violence that their wealth is predicated on? How can storytelling be a method for survival? How do we create environmental alliances across culture, class, age, gender, and other forms of difference?

As part of the opening reception, author Kathryn Savage will read from her debut book Groundglass (2022) which draws on her own experiences growing up on the fence lines of industry and explores how past environmental actions reverberate across landscapes and in our bodies. Kathryn and Willow Curry will discuss the process of using personal stories to investigate brownfield and superfund sites, and the ways that stories can be used for critical inquiry.

Registration is recommended for the opening reception and conversation

Opening Reception
Friday, September 24, 2022, 6:30 - 9:00pm

7:00 - 8:00 PM a reading and conversation with author
Kathryn Savage and Houston-based writer and artist Willow Naomi Curry

followed by drinks and light fare

at Rice University Solar Studios

6100 Main Street

corner of Alumni Drive and College Way

Houston, TX  77005


To attend the in-person event, register for tickets here.