About CCI Arts

About ASCP – the CCI Arts programme

Since 2016, when a major exhibition by the artists, Ackroyd and Harvey, Conflicted Seeds + Spirit, formed part of the opening of the David Attenborough Building in Cambridge, the Arts Science and Conservation Programme has collaborated with a growing list of artists, and, within CCI, catalysing a network of participants in arts and science events, from among our communities of researchers, policy makers, and conservation practitioners, all of who benefit from this interdisciplinarity.

With exhibitions, events, residencies, and collaborations, and an outstanding collection of original art, to draw the attention of audiences to the work of the Cambridge Conservation Initiative, and to grow our reach and impact across the 180 plus network countries, as a programme we aim to:

  • build arts and science collaborations that fuel new ways of working, and catalyse debate, and space for innovation with the CCI community;
  • promote original, holistic and interdisciplinary approaches to conservation practice;
  • mainstream biodiversity into a diverse range of arts practices;
  • collaborate with an array of practitioners to encourage work on key species, important sites and places, and critical themes in conservation, not least in situ.

Working closely with artists is a core ambition and, in the three years since the CCI moved into its new home in Cambridge, collaborations have flourished and brought environmental artists, authors, poets, painters and printmakers, photographers, theatre makers, and others into close contact with the CCI network to create new work, exhibitions, and help influence the ways in which conservation activities are developed.

Cross-disciplinary and cross-sectoral collaboration – making core research matter – is the founding principle of CCI, and engaging the arts community helps. As Bertold Brecht argues so effectively that art is not solely, ‘a mirror to hold up to society, but a hammer with which to shape it.’

Collaborators include: Robert Macfarlane, John Kinsella, Kathleen Jamie and Ruth Padel, Beatrice Forshall, Elizabeth Butterworth, and Jonathan Kingdon

Discover our full list of projects and collaborations

CCI Arts Team

The programme is led by John Fanshawe. As a curator and conservationist, John’s development of the programme embraces dynamic and experimental collaboration, dialogue and exchange.

Assistant Curator Joanna Holland worked with John to develop the programme between 2017-2021. A creative producer and cultural project manager, Joanna is passionate about the transformative power of interdisciplinary programming.

The programme is supported by an Arts, Science and Conservation Working Group, made up of a diverse set of people representing the entire CCI Community, all with an interest in the role that the arts and culture can play in responding to current biodiversity challenges.


The work of the Arts, Science and Conservation Programme cannot be accomplished in isolation.

Find out more about our partners.