Micène Fontaine, May 30, 2020
May. Since 1949, May is Mental Health Month. While there has been progress, there is still a lot of stigma associated with mental health. It can be invisible to others (or relatively easily hidden in many cases), making it all the more damaging. For decades now, I have been dealing with anxiety and depression. With the help of professionals, I have acquired the tools to manage it. Some times better than others. I am stubborn and used to think I could and would beat it. I have since learned that it just does not work that way.
COVID-19 has accelerated societal shifts and exacerbated fault lines in global healthcare, education, and economy.
With 45% of people living in the USA feeling distressed and even higher numbers in other parts of the world, the U.N. has warned that a global mental health crisis is in the making.
So what can we do? Continue Reading
Micène Fontaine, April 21, 2020
April. Earth day is on the 22 (and marks 50 years). Climate change is a very tangible issue. Every professional organization in the architecture and design industry in the US and abroad has rolled out recommendations to help combat climate change. The narrative is often framed as “combat,” us against nature. Something for us to tame, overpower, etc.Continue Reading
Micène Fontaine, April 1, 2020
COVID-19 is claiming lives daily and relentlessly disrupting everything else across the globe. For those of us whose health is unaffected, our attention turns to doing what we can to avoid spreading the virus, protecting ourselves and our loved ones, helping others, and trying to adjust to this new normal.
It also means figuring out how to do our jobs in the context of physical distancing, self-isolation, quarantine, and sheltering in place.
Micène Fontaine, March 5, 2020
March. The scent of honeysuckle colors vivid memories of the treehouse in the woods where I used to play as a young boy. In the spring, wild honeysuckle would come back to life to carve out a room - just for me - where I would play for months to come.
Spring is around the corner, and mother nature is once again - effortlessly it seems - getting ready to put on a show. Architects, artists, designers, gardeners, poets, and scientists alike have long been inspired by nature and still are. As humans, we have long relied on the plant world to heal, protect, and thrive, yet we have also, it seems, forgotten many of the lessons learned along the way.Continue Reading
Micène Fontaine, February 19, 2020
February. Love is in the air, or is it the smell of canned foods?
Did you know that in the US alone, the month of February is claimed by over 12 causes ranging from the worthy Black History Month to - you guessed it - Canned Food Month (apparently, it’s a thing). In addition to that, over 70 holidays will be celebrated, but 2 caught my attention: National Margarita Day (need I say more) and International World Thinking Day. Both are celebrated on February 22, which seems a bit incompatible if you ask me, but I digress.
These days, our insights and attention are the most valuable currency, yet we set very little time aside for the deep thinking that leads to insights.Continue Reading