David Sheen is using the master’s tools to blow up and burn down the master’s house. He spends his days co-creating alternatives, and his nights documenting those alternatives. In plain English, Sheen lives in community and builds healthy houses out of the very earth itself, and records the process and the products of earthen architecture, to spread the good word farther and wider. Sheen apprenticed with cob pioneers Ianto Evans and Linda Smiley at the North American School of Natural Building in Oregon and at Michael Smith’s Emerald Earth in California.
Sheen’s first film, The Red Pill (2003), is an audiovisual culture jam that questions the sustainability of industrial civilization. The film screened at the Planet In Focus Environmental Film Festival in Toronto, the Artivist Film Festival in Hollywood and the Environmental Film Festival of Accra in Ghana. His current project, entitled Sharing and Caring (2012), is a documentary film about choosing to live in community. If First Earth is about the healthiest physical structures for people to live and work in, then Sharing & Caring is about the healthiest social structures for people to live and work in.
First Earth: Uncompromising Ecological Architecture (DVD)
Director: David Sheen
Apect Ratio: 15:1
Length: 90 Minutes
Size: 7.5 x 5.5
Subtitles: English, Dutch, Spanish, Chinese, Portuguese, Hebrew, Slovak, Polish
DVD Format: NTSC
Publisher: PM Press
Subjects: Documentary, Current Events, Environment
First Earth is about a massive paradigm shift for shelter—building healthy houses in the old ways, out of the very earth itself, and living together like in the old days, by recreating villages. An audiovisual manifesto filmed over four years on four continents, it proposes that earthen homes are the healthiest housing in the world; and that since it still takes a village to raise a healthy child, we must transform our suburban sprawl into eco-villages.
First Earth is not a how-to film, but a why-to film. It establishes the appropriateness of earthen building in every cultural context, under all socio-economic conditions, from third-world communities to first-world countryside, from Arabian deserts to American urban jungles. In the age of collapse and converging emergencies, the solution to many of our ills might just be getting back to basics, for material reasons and for spiritual reasons, both personal and political.
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