My family, the trees – Campaign by Sergej Chursyn

Its hard to get many people really to care about trees. Especially if you’re a small organization, the trees you are talking about are somewhere in a rainforest and the people you are talking to are urban people who have very little concept of what a rainforest might be. But it’s much easier to get …

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Swimming With Whale Sharks

Whale sharks are the largest species of fish and are threatened (though not currently endangered) by over-fishing for shark fins. Late last year, photographers Shawn Heinrichs and Kristian Schmidt combined their expertise in fashion and marine photography to create an unusual fashion shoot – fashion models swimming with whale sharks. The aim of the shoot …

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Ai Weiwei – Human Rights Dissident – Environmentalist?

Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei has mounted 1200 bicycles in a magnificent floor to ceiling installation as part of a solo exhibition in Taipei. The artist likely has no environmental statement to make with this installation, but these days it is hard to look at so many bicycles without being put in mind of the …

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Money for Our Times – Artists Design Money

This week The Guardian asked artists and writers to design images of money that would be appropriate for our times. As one can imagine, numerous themes have been explored by the artists concerned. John Gray (above) and Jonathan Frantzen (below) both take up the theme of endangered species, highlighting that, once gone, they will never …

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Gary Hume – Are the issues to big for any of us?

Gary Hume is a successful British artist who does not usually engage with environmental issues. He became involved with Cape Farewell and created some artworks in an attempt to engage with the issues.  As reported in an article in The Guardian, he found this a challenge: “How do you depict global catastrophe?” he says. “I’m …

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Wildlife Made Homeless – Born Free’s Ad Campaign

For many people it is difficult to understand, let alone empathize with, technical statements like “loss of habitat”. This advertizing campaign from the charity Born Free aims to bring this issue into the more human terms of ‘homelessness’. Using images of animals placed in the context of human homelessness, the campaign tries to make clear …

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Cultural Response To Climate Change – David Buckland and Cape Farewell

The creation, expansion and success of Cape Farewell maybe represents the most ambitious, most far-sighted and most successful effort to date to place the arts front and center in the debate about climate change.  Created by David Buckland in 2001, Cape Farewell brings together artists, scientists, educators and the media in a series of expeditions …

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The laugh that makes you cry – The Myth of Clean Energy

I wonder when it was that humor emerged as a method of interaction among human beings and, no doubt later, as an art form. Did neanderthal man make jokes? The video below is very funny – but the reality of the message is enough to make you despair.  Enjoy – it only lasts 7 minutes. …

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The Best Art Can Happen By Accident – Barbara Kruger and the End of Plenty

Barbara Kruger asserts that her art may not be social commentary but simply ‘observation’.  Intentional or not, it comes across as commentary to most people – and pretty pointed commentary at that. The artist has, over the years, addressed many issues including women’s reproductive rights, how development squeezes out lower income people, etc., etc.  Our …

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What does bullfighting have to do with the environment?

Recently I came across this story which was stimulated by an outdoor performance art event as activism. One hundred and twenty five people stripped to their underpants, painted their bodies and created a giant, bleeding bull in front of the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain. They were protesting against the imminent start of the bullfighting …

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