Ethics and Environmental Responsibility | Art is a Real Job

Artists’ use stories, experience and images to communicate the immediacy of their ethics for climate justice. Artists can also respond to the climate crisis by applying these same ethics to their daily practice.


Artist Sally Craven stands, looking at the camera with head tilted, in from of a green leafy tree. She has long blonde hair and is wearing a dark shirt. The photo is a mid shot, showing her waist shoulders and face.

Image: Henry Wolff

Sally Craven


Sally Craven is an artist living on unceded Kaurna land in Adelaide, South Australia, working across the mediums of sculpture and installation. Sally’s practice draws upon her cross-disciplinary background as an artist and landscape architect, exploring the poetic expression of the Australian landscape and contemporary culture. 

She has exhibited at Pari Ari, Seventh Gallery, Cement Fondu, Live Dreams / Performance Space Liveworks Festival, FELTspace, Testing Grounds and Borderlands, Dark MOFO; is currently a sessional lecturer in Master of Landscape Architecture courses; and an outgoing co-director at FELTspace artist-run gallery.

Learn more about Sally

Instagram: @sally_craven__

Carly Tarkari Dodd wears Sapphire and Diamond Earrings, Sapphire and Pearl Necklace and Sapphire and Diamond Engagement Ring; Raffia, blue and silver ribbon; 2022.

Carly Tarkari Dodd wears Sapphire and Diamond Earrings, Sapphire and Pearl Necklace and Sapphire and Diamond Engagement Ring; Raffia, blue and silver ribbon; 2022. Image: Brooke Bowering

Carly Tarkari Dodd


Carly Tarkari Dodd is a Kaurna\Narungga and Ngarrindjeri artist and curator based in Tarntanya (Adelaide). Within her artistic practice Carly mixes traditional and contemporary techniques, to produce works that are conceptually and culturally driven. 

Working at JamFactory as the First Nations Engagement Coordinator and Assistant Curator she has worked closely with First Nations artists and art centres on many projects. Highlighting and amplifying Indigenous voices and culture is a strong passion in her curation practice.

Learn more about Carly


Artist Annika Romeyn smiles at the camera in front of a beach blue sky.

Image: supplied by artist

Annika Romeyn


Annika Romeyn is fortunate to live and work on Ngunnawal and Ngambri Country in Kamberri/Canberra. Inspired by the natural environment of the broader region, she combines watercolour, drawing and printmaking processes to create intricate and immersive works on paper. Through large-scale watercolour monotype prints, Annika seeks to convey the humbling and restorative experience of walking in nature, with a focus on the threshold of rock and water.

Annika has been a finalist in the Ellen José Art Award (2022), winner of the Burnie Print Prize (2021), winner of the Fisher’s Ghost Art Award (2020) and winner of the National Works on Paper prize (2020). Her work is represented by Flinders Lane Gallery, Melbourne.

Learn more about Annika


Instagram: @annika_lucy


Climate-Conscious Art Practices

The arts continue to play an important role in responding to and creating community awareness of the climate crisis. As the climate crisis becomes more visible, many artists are aligning their art practice to their political and ethical values. For individual artists making work in this area - stories, images and experiences can be a powerful way to educate and connect with their audience and illuminate the relationship between climate crisis and issues of social inequality. 

In 2017, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) published the Declaration of Ethical Principles in relation to Climate Change, recognising that ‘climate change is a common concern for all humankind’ and ‘that the global and local challenges of climate change cannot be met without the participation of all people at all levels of society’.

The Code of Practice provides a list of ways that the arts embody action and response to the climate crisis. These include action and response to collective issues like arts organisation’s reliance on funding from the fossil fuel and extractive industries and the ‘artwashing’ of these companies.

Individual artists can also take practical actions towards a climate-conscious daily art practice. These can include changes to the way use energy, select materials, deal with waste and interact with organisations and services. 

A great place to begin making changes is at the beginning of developing a new project.

A climate-conscious art practice may:

  • Consider the short and long term environmental impact of an art work or project.
  • Plan for zero waste.
  • Recognise and log the environmental impacts of digital cultural production and its climate footprint.
  • Build carbon offsets into project budgets and use local and reputable offset providers.
  • Use low toxicity and biodegradable products, vegetable-based inks, locally made or printed, and low impact archival papers like bamboo.
  • Be aware of disposable practices and avoid run-off of chemicals into the water table.
  • Consider using local suppliers with transparent environmental policies and sustainable practices.
  • Consider the heating and cooling options and shift to energy efficient, low consumption devices with energy-saving modes.

Read more about artists’ ethics and environmental responsibility in the Code of Practice.

Find out more

Discover more about arts and the climate crisis in the following Code of Practice chapters:

Find more NAVA resources about climate-conscious art practices:


Like all organisations within the arts ecology, schools can support climate justice by assessing their sphere of influence and developing a Climate Justice Policy/Plan.

Task (Individual)

Create a manifesto poster outlining your climate ethics and how they inform your individual climate-conscious artistic practice.

Task (Group)

As a class, or in groups, review examples of Climate Justice Policies and Plans from arts organisations before using the NAVA’s Code of Practice and the Gallery Climate Coalition’s Decarbonisation action plan: For non-profits and institutions resource to guide the creation of a collective class plan to reduce waste and emissions within your art classroom.

Examples of Climate Justice Policies and Plans:

About Art is a Real Job

Art is a Real Job was a national program throughout March 2023 that invited artists to share how good industry practice helped shape their careers and navigate the art world with confidence. The program dissected and championed NAVA’s new Code of Practice via four artist-led online events, including workshops, studio tours and panel conversations for secondary school student artists, educators and pre-service educators.

Exhibiting Your Work

Artists Thomas Readett, April Phillips, Tim Meakins

Host Alise Hardy | Support Emma Pham

Hero image artwork Emma Pham

Program Manager Alise Hardy

Ethics and Environmental Responsibility

Artists Annika Romeyn, Carly Tarkari Dodd, Sally Craven

Host Alise Hardy | Support Emma Pham

Hero image artwork Emma Pham

Program Manager Alise Hardy

Working with Galleries

Artists Sam Gold, Nikki Lam, Lisa Sammut

Hosts Penelope Benton, Emma Pham | Support Alise Hardy

Hero image artwork Emma Pham

Program Manager Alise Hardy

Money Matters

Artists Kay Abude, Rachel Burke, Ryan Presley

Hosts Emma Pham, Georgie Cyrillo

Hero image artwork Emma Pham

Program Manager Alise Hardy


Resource written by Alise Hardy.

First published in June 2023 by National Association for the Visual Arts as part of the Art is a Real Job.

Art is a Real Job is supported by the Copyright Agency Cultural Fund.

NAVA logo and Copyright Agency logo in black and white

Ethics and Environmental Responsibility | Art is a Real Job