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Eco Artists Transform “Mother Earth” into “Lover Earth”

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Ecosexuality is a new movement at the intersection of culture and ecological activism founded by performance artists Annie Sprinkle and Beth Stephens which seeks to re-frame the conversation around solving environmental issues.

“We are shifting the metaphor from Earth as mother to Earth as lover,” says Stephens, who divides her time between making art and teaching the subject at UC Santa Cruz.

“When we imagine the Earth as a mother, we imagine the mother will take care of us and we can just take, take, take,” says Sprinkle, who is also an educator and former sex worker. “Whereas the Earth as a lover, you have to treat them nice or they go away.”

Ecosex artists Beth Stephens and Annie Sprinkle get cozy with the daisies
Ecosex artists Beth Stephens and Annie Sprinkle get cozy with the daisies (Photo: Peter Ruocco)

Sprinkle, Stephens, and other members of the growing ecosexual community use performance art, documentary film, interactive walking tours — and a ton of humor — to grab people’s attention around global warming and other pressing ecological problems with the aim of inciting them to action.

Later this month, Stephens and Sprinkle are heading out on the road in their sparkly, blue “Pollination Pod” (a tricked-out, 1975 Perris Pacer camper van) to interview and interact with ecosexual artists, activists, thinkers, and practitioners, as well as any detractors they might meet on their journey throughout California. The duo says this research will inform their next film project, which focuses on water.


“We’re trying to make the environmental movement more sexy, fun and diverse,” says Sprinkle. “Some of us don’t quite fit into the Sierra Club because we’re a little weird.”

To find out more about ecosexuality, head here

— Chloe Veltman

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