Inspire

Spacious 500-acre park provides green backdrop to inspiring climate change art

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Indicators: Artists on Climate Change” is an environmental series from over a dozen artists. The exhibition opened in May and is being shown at the Storm King Art Center—a 500-acre sculpture park in New York’s Hudson Valley.

Consisting of both indoor and outdoor installations, the series explores the impacts of climate change and incorporates scientific, cultural, and aesthetic perspectives.

“From its founding in 1960, Storm King has prioritized environmental projects including land conservation, reclamation of industrial sites for sensitive landscaping for art using native plants, and preservation of wildlife habitat corridors in the Hudson Valley,” says John P. Stern, President of Storm King. “This exhibition features artists whose site-sensitive and site-specific works resonate with Storm King’s mission and history of environmental stewardship and that further the dialogue between art and nature while also speaking to broader issues that affect regional, national, and global ecological health.”

For “Permanent Field Observations,” David Brooks found natural elements—like tree stumps, roots, and acorns—within Storm King’s peripheral wooded areas to cast in bronze and installed the bronze renditions next to the objects from which they were cast.

Tavares Strachan, who once installed a chunk of Alaskan ice in a solar-powered freezer outside the Brooklyn Museum, displayed a neon sign in the indoor gallery:

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New York artist and conservation ecologist Hara Woltz built a functioning weather station that collects climate data. The piece features ten interactive elements, made of painted aluminium and wood, which represent predictions of Arctic sea ice melt by decade and related sea level rise.

A sculpture by Mark Dion, recently featured in Prospect.4 New Orleans, “Field Station for the Melancholy Marine Biologist,” is a weathered wooden cabin whose interior resembles a scientific lab station. The contents of the ‘lab’ reflect the ecology of the surrounding area.

Selections from “The Fortunetellers,” a multimedia project by Ellie Ga, is a reflection on her experience as a crewmember during a five-month expedition near the North Pole aboard the Tara. Tarot cards (reminiscent of the ship’s name) signify the contingent nature of the future and the lines of a palm reading are redolent of prematurely cracking ice.

Brooklyn-based artist Mary Mattingly planted several different types of tropical trees—mainly palms—in Storm King’s South Fields. Characteristically out of place within the landscape, these exotic trees signify species migration due to climate change.

Learn more via this video:

Indicators: Artists on Climate Change – Mary Mattingly from Storm King Art Center on Vimeo.

The exhibition runs until 11 November. Participating artists include: David Brooks, Dear Climate, Mark Dion, Ellie Ga, Justin Brice Guariglia, Allison Janae Hamilton, Jenny Kendler, Maya Lin, Mary Mattingly, Mike Nelson, Steve Rowell, Gabriela Salazar, Tavares Strachan, Meg Webster, and Hara Woltz.

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