Monday, June 23, 2014 - 4:38pm

In 2009, the David Brower Center opened its doors to the greater Bay Area activist community and within a matter of days the place was abuzz. Resident organizations had moved in and were up and running, beautiful artworks by world renowned photographer Sebastião Salgado hung on the walls of the Hazel Wolf Gallery, and local community members had begun using our meeting and event space regularly.  


From the beginning, we sought to maintain the ideals and principles held by our namesake David Brower throughout all of our offerings.  How we utilized our special events spaces was and is a critical piece of that puzzle, and a question arose early in our development: how does one truly “green” an event?


Tuesday, May 20, 2014 - 4:34pm

"People will only go with us to a place they have first been to in their minds." 

 - Gopal Dayeneni, organizer with Movement Generation’s Justice and Ecology Project.

Think back to your earliest memory of when you witnessed something beautiful in nature.  What did you feel?  Did anyone share this experience with you or was it yours alone?

Now think back to the first time you encountered a work of art that revealed something to you in a way you’d never before experienced.  Were you alone or with others? Was it a masterpiece in a museum that you had studied, an anonymous artwork or something a friend had made?

In both of these encounters – with nature and with art – did you need to know what you were seeing before you could appreciate how it moved you?  Or was it something that you instinctively felt? 

The power of encountering a work of art, an experience in nature – how do these experiences change us?  Do they change us?  Can these encounters inspire us to take actions in the world that we might not otherwise take?

Tuesday, April 29, 2014 - 11:47am

Every summer, the David Brower Center hosts a juried show featuring a variety of Bay Area-based artists.  Art has been a critical part of our programming since our opening, and the juried show gives us a chance to explore local perspectives on today’s most critical issues.  With this summer’s exhibition, Reimagining Progress: Production, Consumption, and Alternative Economies, the Brower Center presents the work of 18 artists looking at our society’s unsustainable present and offering possible solutions for the future.  Earlier this month, the Brower Center’s Community Partnerships Manager Jackie Hasa interviewed via email three Reimagining Progress artists whose work questions our current socioeconomic values: Kathryn Kenworth (Trade-O-Mat), Patrick Lydon (What Is Food: Burger and Cabbage), and Paul Taylor (FOOD (Help Yourself)).  Their conversation below has been edited for length and clarity.

Thursday, March 27, 2014 - 11:32am

On Saturday, April 19, fifty strangers from across the Bay Area will gather around one long table at the Brower Center. As people walk in from Allston St. in downtown Berkeley, they will enter into a warm space filled with flowers, flickering candles, and a variety of art supplies strewn across the table. They are gathering together for LATE NITE ART (LNA), a monthly social art event that combines collaborative art-making, delicious food, and facilitated discussion to unleash creativity and create community in the San Francisco Bay Area.  

Tuesday, February 25, 2014 - 4:23pm

This month, we had the wonderful opportunity to ask featured artist Douglas Gayeton several questions about his work on The Lexicon of Sustainability project, which is currently on display here at the David Brower Center. Gayeton shared with us not only the journey that led to the development of the Lexicon, but also his process as an artist and his upbringing. Through his reflections, he reveals that food is intimately a cultural experience, and thus our experiences with our food system can be improved by returning to that mindset.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014 - 4:53pm

A core strategy of the Brower Center is to convene engaged citizens, thought leaders and advocates to better understand the most pressing environmental and social issues of our time.  We strive to partner with outstanding thought leaders to craft programs that provide practical solutions to serious environmental threats.

Our most recent exhibition, Richard Misrach and Kate Orff’s Petrochemical America Project Room addressed the destructive power of the petrochemical industry on the environment and communities living along the stretch of the Mississippi River from New Orleans to Baton Rouge. The Brower Center produced exhibition-related public programs that included workshops, film screenings, youth activities and community forums. From these productive conversations our network of changemakers grew.  



Wednesday, January 1, 2014 - 12:00am

On December 5, Nelson Mandela passed away at the age of 95, prompting the world to celebrate his life and reflect upon his incredible legacy of activism, sacrifice and unparalleled leadership in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds. At that time, many of us in the Brower Center community shared stories of what Mandela meant to us, and often our conversations turned to remembering anti-apartheid struggles and the many lessons Mandela’s actions taught us about leading from a place of compassion without bitterness.  One among us shared how her own activism played a key role in paving the way to freedom for Nelson Mandela.  We were proud to learn of the anti-aparteid activism of Brower Center Board Member, California Assembly Member Nancy Skinner.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013 - 4:00pm

Bay Area Green Tours is a non-profit labor of love, fueled by the generosity of wonderful interns and the community.  We have worked diligently for 5 years to gather a comprehensive database of pioneering innovators in the Bay Area and we want to share these role models with students of all ages.  

BAGT hosts tours that display the innovative nature of Bay Area sustainability pioneers. For example, we have been pleased to feature Urban Ore on our Zero Waste Tours where they are often picked as our participants' favorite stop. We thank them heartily for their exemplary support!

Monday, November 25, 2013 - 2:53pm

I was thrilled to join the David Brower Center as its new Executive Director just two months ago.  In my work on environmental and social justice issues over the past two decades, I learned first-hand that when diverse people engage, dream, learn and act together, we can find inspired solutions to today’s most pressing problems. 

In our early years, generous community members like you have helped build the Brower Center into a place where inspiration would be turned into sustained action.  We are a long-term investment in the environmental and social justice movement, and you have a key role to play—whether in your daily life, in the actions you take to join coalitions and attend community meetings, or in the organizations you support financially.

Sunday, November 24, 2013 - 7:39pm

Located in the David Brower Center, the Center for Ecoliteracy (CEL) was cofounded in 1995 by executive director Zenobia Barlow, systems thinker Fritjof Capra, and environmentalist Peter Buckley (founder of the David Brower Center). It works to advance ecological education in K–12 schools.

What is ecological education – or "ecoliteracy"? "It encourages students to experience and understand how nature sustains life, and how to live accordingly," explains CEL communications director Lisa Bennett. "The vision that motivates everything we do: Future generations thriving in resilient communities that live in harmony with the natural world."