5 Incredible Artists Taking on the Climate Crisis
Artists are taking the climate crisis into frame and the results are emotional, beautiful and stirring.
So you've seen the best climate change cartoons and shared them with your friends. You've showed your family the infographics on climate change and health, infographics on how the grid works and infographics about clean, renewable energy. You've even forwarded these official National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration graphs that explain the 10 clear indicators of climate change to your colleagues at the office.
But sometimes, you need more than just the facts and data to really bring home the reality of the climate crisis. You need to make an emotional connection—and what better way to do it than through the power of art?
Read on for five outstanding examples of art that reaches beyond facts and figures to capture the crisis in ways numbers alone can't touch:
1. Jill Pelto's Glaciogenic Art
Scientist and artist Jill Pelto was inspired by charts and data to create unique new artwork that adds an element of emotion that can be lacking in scientific circles.
"As a scientist I make and read a lot of graphs, yet I forgot that many people do not," Pelto told Creators. "Using actual information ... provided an intellectual context to my work while my illustrations around the graphs created an emotional story that can inspire people to promote environmental justice ... My hope is that my artwork can share this message of change yet also ignite a passion to help prevent further environmental damage."
2. Diane Tuft's the Arctic Melt
We're sadly getting used to hearing news about sea ice nearing record lows at both poles. For most people, however, the Arctic is a place they will never see in person. After years documenting the impacts of climate crisis, photographer Diane Tuft journeyed to the north to show how the Arctic is both beautiful and changing. The result: her new book, The Arctic Melt: Images of a Disappearing Landscape,
"By sharing these images, I hope to provoke discussion on the fragile environment that we are experiencing and stimulate dialogue on how to preserve the beauty of our planet," she wrote.
3. Lorenzo Quinn's Support
"I have three children, and I'm thinking about their generation and what world we're going to pass on to them. I'm worried, I'm very worried."
Artist Lorenzo Quinn created Support for the 57th International Art Exhibition of the La Biennale di Venezia. Venice, for all its canals and rich history, is highly susceptible to sea level rise, with the famed Piazza San Marco experiencing acqua alta—high water—up to 60 times per year.
Regarding his work, Quinn said that he "wants to speak to the people in a clear, simple and direct way through the innocent hands of a child and it evokes a powerful message, which is that united we can make a stand to curb the climate change that affects us all."
4. Murray Fredricks' Vanity
Call it the anti-selfie. Now on display as part of Australia's ART+CLIMATE=CHANGE 2017 festival—an exhibition centered on climate change art—Australian photographer Murray Fredricks placed mirrors in the Lake Eyre salt flats. But rather than reflecting himself or any humans, they point outwards, to the fragile and beautiful environment being altered by climate change. The results are stunning.
5. Brian Foo's Climate Change Coloring Book
Feeling inspired and want to express your passion for climate change through art? Artists of any skill level can enjoy this adult coloring book featuring climate data.
Brian Foo, the designer, told Fast Company, "the hope is that if you spent 30 minutes or an hour actively coloring data related to climate change, the information would be more likely to stick and you'd have time to reflect on the underlying issue."
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Alternative facts won't halt rising global temperatures. Fake news won't make polluted air safe to breathe. And burning more fossil fuels sure won't protect our planet.
But clean energy and science will.
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