San Jose City College Gallery, San Jose, CA
overall dimensions, 25’ x 30’ x10’
Materials: Nature and ecology books, drywall screws, soundtrack, pedestals
Changed Climate invites viewers to contemplate our current ecological crises. The books in this artwork, now rendered inaccessible, contain images of a thriving natural world now either gone or damaged, and important scientific information concerning our declining environment. Ecological challenges explored in these books include rising rates of species extinctions, ocean acidification, the death of coral reefs, forest mortality, pollution of our air and water, as well as an increasingly damaged climate.
My violent treatment of these books was done with a grave heart and with a clear memory of the Nazi book burnings. This "sinning in the name of art" was only committed as an attempt to rouse our sleeping consciousnesses. I subjected my own book to this furious transformation.
Climate change, our most pressing problem, is accelerating many of these environmental challenges, and may soon threaten the stability of our societies as food and water become more expensive and scarce. To protect our planet and ensure a healthy future for ourselves, our children, and the natural world, we must be guided by good science and the life-sustaining systems of nature.
The worldwide response to global warming has been slow and halting. However, in 2015,195 countries agreed to follow The Paris Agreement. This is the first international legally binding agreement of its kind, committing the signatory nations to reducing their greenhouse gas emissions. The United States of America’s leadership role in this important work is now seriously threatened. Supporting the Paris Agreement and advancing other restorative legislation is vitally important.
The books I included in Changed Climate:
Beautiful California: a Sunset Pictorial, D. Krell, 1969
The Ocean Realm, National Geographic Society, 1978
Storm World: Hurricanes, Politics and the Battle Over Global Warming, C. Mooney, 2007
Earth in the Balance: Ecology and the Human Spirit, A. Gore, 1992
Heaven Is Under Our Feet: A Book for Walden Woods, D. Henley, et. al., 1991
Our Green and Living World: The Wisdom to Save It, E. Ayensu, 1984
Nature Speaks: Art and Poetry for the Earth, D. Kennedy, 2016
Denialism: How Irrational Thinking Hinders Scientific Progress, Harms the Planet, and
Threatens Our Lives, M. Specter, 2010
The Last Dive: A Father and Son's Fatal Descent into the Ocean's Depths, B. Chowdhury,
Harper Perennial, 2002
Natural Resource Conservation: Management for a Sustainable World, O. Owens, 1994
Ecology, Life Magazine, 1963
Secrets of the Seas, Reader's Digest, 1972
Endangered Animals, T. Downs, 2008