© Tucson Arts Brigade / The Water Festival

DEC. 11
JAN. 14
FEB. 11


Nov. 19th Brainstorm:


Basically, we centered on what the perception of the water is, means and the problems surrounding it are.

We are deluded about the availability, sources and supply; is it never ending? Polluted or not? What are its` uses?

What are the different local cultures understanding of water? It would be important to include them to present their perspective on the issue. There are two main tribes: Tohono O`odham and Pascua Yaqui. (Hasan High-School)

There are 10,000 refugees in Tucson which add to problems in the use of water as they need to be educated as well.  [Source?]

We realize that other countries are as concerned about water as we are or even more and that water = development ****** The Greenbuild Expo had many foreign exhibitors of water management products.

There was talk about an intelligent aboriginal process such as bamboo planting.

There were comments on garbage in the water table, nuclear processes and local food production.



- A tap that doesn’t have water (represent impact of actually REALLY NOT having water anymore)

- Water-bottle costumes

- A billboard at the festival asking “Where does the water come from?” NO ONE KNOWS is the sad part!!!!

- Make fun of the fact that Phoenix has 300,000 pools.

- Creatively acknowledge that there is a battle over water.


Age old water battle. In Tucson, the Black Base was a battle between the Tohono O’odham and Cattle Ranchers.

There seems to be a conflict on issues of drought, capture, storage, increase in temperatures and the extinction of species.

As far as challenges, US high-schools are 10 years behind on education in water problems and climate changes.

Mirage Pacific shower systems to use gray water to water plants – promote Mirage Pacific

Someone commented that it would be good to divert everyone’s gray water to fruits trees planted on the streets and that anyone could eat them !

There was talk about the draught in Australia and how they were restricting the use of water and that it might be a good idea to restrict use.


EDUCATION – understand what is happening and create awareness – there are too many people and not enough water!!!

15 minute shower is a waste.

There was talk about water bottles:

That as far as 2, 3 and 4 generations back, there has been fear of drinking from water fountains, that we have inherited death by plastic, that we should use stainless steel water bottles lined with bps and that we don’t need to buy water bottles. How did we survive before Evian came out???

What do the children/youth think and propose?



NOV. 19
JAN. 14
FEB. 11

Dec. 11th Brainstorm:



  • School collaboration
  • Sky Island Alliance
  • Survey Monkey
  • Water Education
  • No water day/hour at schools
  • Educating teachers – water focused lesson plans/creative curriculum
  • Open house for community encouraging group activities, raising awareness and interest of water issues & goals


  • Green Expo
  • Arcosanti
  • Awareness of different organizations perceptions of use and actual use of water (agriculture, corporations, developers, etc.)

Theatre – “Battle” for Water

  • Fire/water with Flam Chen and possibly Society for Creative Anachronisms or another performing group
  • Showing in a fun way how much water is used on a day to day basis, 2 gal jugs converted to 1400 gals, towing them around in a wagon
  • “Water Bandits” – water guns, steal water & rights to water
  • Crown H2O King/Queen, Water Nymphs & Drag Queens/Kings


  • Call to community asking for pieces that fit water theme to be shown in a gallery
  • Could be pieces created during the 3 days of festival displayed over the weekend
  • Environmental art
  • Note: time needs for creating pieces and potential for sales, % to fund Water Project


  • Viral marketing campaign
  • On-line water game leading up to festival & at festival


  • Address apathy – individuals want to help though they can’t do it alone
  • Engaging peoples attention & giving an experience they can physically, psychologically, emotionally, socially relate to – IMPACT
  • Over coming obstacles of people who want to take the “easy” way out, rationalizing, ignorance, naivety – give them facts
  • Looking at blockages for potential change (ex: peeing on ground not seen highly, but it is really so bad, maybe in designated areas??)
  • How to turn a “negative” perception into a “positive” perception?


  • International representation of water issues
  • Give people experience of subsidence
  • Moving people “through” a concept – past, present, future of water
  • Virtual water – how much water goes into a “thing”, how much water is used in a day?
  • Showing where water comes from and where it goes
  • How to create the venue to represent contexts
  • Controversy about purification process – water analysis
  • Water systems – raising awareness of importance of investing in current water systems to keep them up to standard and prevent them from breaking down to create further problems
  • Self contained composting toilet


NOV. 19
DEC. 11

FEB. 11


Jan. 14th Brainstorm:


1.  Refugees are NOT a problem and probably use less water than the average person.

2.  We want to make sure that people understand that water is a finite resource.

3.  How far down does water go?  How much is there?   Do we know?  Does it matter? We keep finding ways to use more water and the water table is also being damaged by med's and chemicals...The exploding population is making more and more demands on our water.


Performance idea:  Household - someone realizes water is not good to drink.  There are med's in the water.  Inspired by...

*In Albuquerque they know that there is an extreme amount of  me's in the local water but the city doesn't care.

There is a documentary about water.  Called End of the Line - about when no more fish.  Shows dried up water and fish.

All over the world there are places where cattle are dying.  There is no ore water.  Water is a global problem.


Performance idea: Someone tell a story of water and it's connections locally and globally.  Inspired by...

*People spend money on machines that clear and purify water.  Dasani gets water from other countries (and Atlanta city water).  There are places where there is no water.  People can't survive.  They commit suicide

Performance idea: Family 30 years ago, family now, family in the future.  Show how each generation uses water.  How do we live without water or when water just drips.  Show this in the future.

Performance idea: Take the film below but exchange "black people" for WATER inspired by the film, Day of Absence - what happens when black people disappear.

One person said "Don't make people think about the effects of no water...make them feel what it would be like to live in a world with no water.  We need to move people like our grandparents into buying products that don't use water.  They are a different generation and they don't understand when we tell them.  We need to say something that doesn't reflect leftist hippies or regurgitate the same ideas that haven't worked.  We need something new.  We don't want to preach to the choir but to the audience that hasn't heard yet.  Also target women.  Why?  Women will appeal to the masses of femininity about water and water issues.  There are lots of Latino Women in Tucson.  We need to reach them.

Performance idea: We use water in so many ways we don't think about.  A car uses water.  Have a demo of how water is used.  Represent it's uses.

Performance idea:

Story of Stuff/Story of Water



1.  those that water their lawns

2.  those with swimming pools in their yards

3.  those that leave the taps on

4.  water bottlers

5.  water hoarders

6.  water bandits/thieves


1.  water conservers

2.  water harvesters

3.  water crusaders

4.  water cleaners

5.  water cops

6.  water recyclers

7.  water lawyers

8.  farmers of food


have someone buying shots of water from the water bandit

show different economic systems played out in different characters

show a white female child dying of dehydration


Next meeting:  bring your own cup and plate


Performance idea: show the contrast between car washes running all day with lines of cars getting their car washed and then show people who have nothing to drink.


Iceburg much water is wasted to grow this?  Go for romaine lettuce.

Agriculture - what do we grow that uses the most water?  the least water?

Does the cost of the food in the stores reflect how much water was used to grow the food?


Performance idea:

Dead babies in a play.

Reveal the before scene - mom about to pour water for the baby.  She doesn't know the water is polluted but the audience does.  The audience is horrified.  Meanwhile mom preps for a party.  Baby ingests water and dies.  Twist of fate - last minute things go wrong.


NOV. 19
DEC. 11
JAN. 14


Feb. 11th Brainstorm:


Maybe Mirage Pacific can be a sponsor  (uses shower systems to use grey water to plant water)


•  Water bottle art fest. Make costumes out of recycled water bottles.  Make a dog house out of water bottles and donate it to the Humane Society.  Or have a contest re-using water bottles - ideas of things to make include dog houses, bird feeders, cockroach catchers, bat feeders.  Have all kinds of wacky categories.

• Paulo Freire Freedom School - collaboration with Sky Island Alliance.  Environmental Education Exchange > collect water bottles and make costumes/sculptures/props for festival

• Collect Water Bottles for 2 weeks and make a recycled art water bottle exhibit.  Maybe a water bottle dunk tank.  Water bottle art festival.  Make it a theme - What happens to these bottles?  Reduce plastic consumption - what are the health benefits of water bottles and what are the drawbacks.  What are the origins of different waters? What are the off gases? What is the whole story about Petroleum to make plastic?

• Have a water tasting (like wine...a blind taste test)

• "Water Bandits" - have water guns, steal water and rights to water - name them after the water company - have people be these characters at the festival. Water battle of water bottles.

• Dasani comes from the Detroit river (and Atlanta city water purified with salt added and then bottled by Coca Cola).  It is banned in Europe

• Educate people about the impact of plastic.  Collect different brands of water bottles.  Have water bottle character costumes display

• Educate the youth and make them used critical thinking.   Have questions and surveys on Survey Monkey.  Have a report card on Survey Monkey and have the youth take the survey.

How to mobilize, motivate action

Fear yikes, juicy, bubblicious

Goal is to reduce water bottle consumption and define creative reuses.


NOV. 19
DEC. 11
JAN. 14
FEB. 11


A Couple of Extra Post-Its

Water to be reorganized and valued as the precious resource that it is River Resurrection

Presented By


TUCSON ARTS BRIGADE, INC. (TAB) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit participatory service-based community arts and education organization that specializes in Green Arts, offering intergenerational and cross-cultural opportunities for civic engagement. TAB facilitates dialogue and employs arts-based solutions to complex community issues including graffiti, bullying, crime, drug use, health and wellness, empowering youth and elders, beautification, sustainable design, and revitalizing neighborhoods. Bringing together schools, neighborhoods, civic agencies, businesses, and other non-profits, TAB is a national model for sustainable community development through the arts. MORE INFO: