Climate change art

2009-08-05

in Art, Politics, Science, The environment

Plants, rust, concrete

Do we need climate change art?

I would say we do. Art inspires people to think beyond their experience and grasp the implications of trends. It also motivates people emotionally in a way that scientific analysis can be hard-pressed to do. (Indeed, does only by accident, since scientific reports are not written to evoke emotional responses.)

Has any important climate change art emerged? (Weird sculpture outside 111 Sussex aside) Is there a danger that art that plays upon the worst fears evoked by climate science will be counterproductive? Can art help us to really grasp the danger, without the need for costly disasters to prove the link from greenhouse gasses to climate change to danger to humanity?

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{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

La Canadienne August 5, 2009 at 11:29 pm

Well, I don’t know about climate change art, but I love your photo of the day here.

Milan August 6, 2009 at 7:04 am

Thanks!

It’s on the eastern sidewalk of Booth Street, near the Chaudiere Bridge.

Tristan August 6, 2009 at 7:11 pm

I think you are right-on in your account of the function of art. The only thing I would add is to emphasize “beyond experience” to include enlarging, or en-richening experience. I don’t know much about the contemporary art scene with respect to climate change, but would be interested to see contemporary works reckoning with this issue. In general I’m under the impression that whereas previous environmental art and concepts emphasised fragility (i.e. spaceship earth), the next/current phase will stress responsibility, stewardship, gravitas – like this for example: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Statue_of_Responsibility

Tristan August 6, 2009 at 7:31 pm

This blog might be a place to start: http://blog.greenmuseum.org/blog/

. August 8, 2009 at 2:13 pm

SATURDAY, AUGUST 8, 2009

Eco-art: an exploration

Thanks to Milan Ilnyckyj, whose blog on climate change art blazed this trail. I spent a couple of hours chasing links and looking up old notes — but this is only a sampling. Suggest other links in your comments.

Antonia August 10, 2009 at 5:44 am

The V&A design exhibition ‘Telling Tales’ had at least a few pieces commenting on man’s relationship with the environment and climate change. I seem to remember a lot of other UK stuff vaguely but would have to hunt for examples.

Antonia August 10, 2009 at 5:44 am

Love that shot btw :)

Claire August 10, 2009 at 7:23 am

At Glastonbury Festival this year, in the Children’s area, kids had been busy on an art project where they turned recycled objects into minature wind-turbines, which together created a mini-wind farm.

. September 24, 2009 at 9:39 am

Lamp that runs on human blood

By Cory Doctorow on Green

Mike Thompson’s “Blood Lamp” is a single-use lantern that draws its energy from a drop of your blood, making you consider the cost of energy in a uniquely personal way.

For the lamp to work one breaks the top off, dissolves the tablet, and uses their own blood to power a simple light. By creating a lamp that can only be used once, the user must consider when light is needed the most, forcing them to rethink how wasteful they are with energy, and how precious it is.

. November 19, 2009 at 9:47 am

Cape Farewell has brought together leading artists, writers, scientists, educators and media for a series of expeditions into the wild and challenging High Arctic. Together they have mapped, measured and been inspired by this awesome environment and have endeavoured to bring home stories and artworks that tell how a warming planet is impacting on this wilderness.

Antonia December 2, 2009 at 11:57 am

There are a lot of climate change awareness art pieces out there. I have been collecting a few links, of which I think I like this the most. I may add the others later.

http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/climate-change/climate-change-the-ice-bear-cometh-1832170.html

Antonia December 11, 2009 at 3:44 pm
Antonia December 18, 2009 at 12:28 pm
Milan December 18, 2009 at 12:40 pm

Oxford had something similar, two years ago.

. March 24, 2010 at 1:59 pm

“Recognizing the importance of creative expression in our movement, It’s Getting Hot In Here is hosting a month-long series called “Create Our Climate,” which will feature video, poetry, prose, visual art and music from this community. If you have already created such a piece and want to share it, sign up! If you want to specifically create a piece for this series, sign up!”

. March 22, 2011 at 10:27 pm

HONG KONG — A leading anti-pollution campaign group in Hong Kong is deploying a new weapon in the fight for clean air in this Asian financial hub: art.

Enlisting the support of 40 artists and the auction house Sotheby’s, the Clean Air Network has organized an auction of 51 environment-inspired works of modern art in what it says is the first awareness and fund-raising event of its kind.

Most of the pieces went on display Monday in the upscale International Finance Center shopping mall in Hong Kong’s financial district, where they will remain until March 27. They will go under the Sotheby’s hammer April 4, where they will form part of the auction house’s twice-yearly sale of contemporary Asian art .

. May 25, 2011 at 6:10 pm
. April 29, 2012 at 3:55 pm

The uses of photography in a crisis
posted by Bridget McKenzie

. November 13, 2015 at 6:18 pm
. June 10, 2016 at 3:32 am

Let the Images Imagine
Potential Roles for the Arts in the Approach to Climate Change
Rob Roggema

WAGENINGEN UNIVERSITY, VAN HALL LARENSTEIN

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