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Participant Questionnaires

Your NameArlene Salomon
Cohort AssignmentCohort B (Americas, Online Intensive)
1. What do you see as your primary work at this stage of your life?

At this stage in my life- over 55 years, I want to use my past experience as an exhibiting artist and certified arborist and combine those fields with my skills in interior architecture and design. Working on various projects I hope to be able to contribute to a very high quality of life for all people for all time and concerned with leaving behind a huge footprint of resources and abundance.

2. What role do you see as yours to play?

I can offer insight on vibration, reaction and adjustments that occur in natural systems (trees and their associates) so that we can better collaborate and evolve with the particular region we are living, working, developing.

3. What goals or aims do you have in regard to the above?

It would be very meaningful to have the opportunity to work with a team that creates 'living buildings', new builds or retrofits existing buildings, working beyond the traditional scope of architecture/interior design by encompassing the broader aspects of the environment into the design process.

4. Where do you feel your next arenas for personal growth are?

Collaboration, communication and building community.

5. And for professional growth?

Collaboration, communication and building community. For my professional growth, I have a strong desire for mentorship/internship and job opportunity.

6. What have you invested in to get you where you are?

Strong relationships are most important, I've invested a lot of myself in relationships with people- close friends, family, professors and colleagues and the land. In Hawaii I had the opportunity to live in the back country without running water or electricity, grew my own food, collected my own water, had a couple babies. Those were the most abundant years of my life and have shaped the way that I see the world in a big way. I've also invested a lot in undergraduate + graduate education, certifications and continuing ed, beginning with my studies at an art school in New York City, which had a profound impact and exposure to the workings of a brilliant city ecosystem, fearless creatives and humanitarian influence.

7. What fields of learning and which thinkers have been important in your life?

Humanities- authors, poets, scientists, naturalists; Lame Deer, Leslie Marmon Silko, Basho, Gary Snyder, Aldo Leopold, John Muir.

Artists- some of whom were my professors; May Stevens, Hannah Wilke, Eva Hesse, Mary Kelly, Barbara Kruger, Morris Graves, Anselm Kiefer, Charles Burchfield, Joseph Beuys

Arboriculture; Dr. Alex Shigo, chief scientist of the U.S. Forest Service, was my mentor and friend. He was known as the 'father of modern arboriculture' and author of many books on trees.

Biologist; Dr. Arthur Medeiros, research biologist with the U.S. Geological Survey, was my mentor and friend. He spearheaded the Auwahi Forest Restoration Project on Maui, a community-based effort to save tracts of highly endangered dry forest at Auwahi as biological and cultural sanctuaries.

Permaculture and Agroforestry; Michael Howden, Bruce Hill, Farley Jacob, and Stefan Reeve in Maui Hawaii taught me with years of hands on work experience and I had the opportunity to work briefly with the Bullock Brothers on Orcas Island. Craig Elevitch is another big influence on Big Island, Hawaii, read his books and attended his workshops.

Design + Regenerative Development; Michael Samett, sustainability professor at AAU, William McDonough, Michael Braungart, Peter Buchanan, Jason McLennan, International Living Future Institute, David Orr, Peter Senge, Janine Benyus.

8. Can you frame your philosophy or cosmology of life? What role(s) do humans play in it?

I am spiritually inclined but do not consider myself religious. Going out on a limb here with and underscore from The Bible Student's Association, Insight Books,
“Love never fails. It will never come to an end or cease to exist. New knowledge and understanding may correct things we once believed; hope changes as the hoped-for things are realized and new things are hoped for, but love always remains in its fullness and continues to be built up stronger and stronger."

Many years ago I came across this quote in my studies and still struck by how simply it frames existence of the universe and our role in it.

Date CreatedJanuary 23, 2023


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