Harrowing Works of Art Inspired by Climate Change

Climate change never really fades from artists’ or the public’s imagination, but there are times of year and moments of crisis when it peaks as a source of inspiration and concern. The start of summer is one of those times, and this year, it has been been intensified by the news of wildfires in Colorado, a water crisis in West Texas oilfields, and a 400-year flood in Central Europe, all of which can be traced to the effects of global warming. For Unfold, an exhibition that has traveled to venues in London and Chicago and has now arrived in Vienna, 25 artists were asked to create a work of art in response to expeditions to the High Arctic and the Andes, where they were able to witness the harrowing “tipping points” of climate change in the flesh. Their contributions, after the jump, show a range of inventive and emotionally challenging responses to a world’s adjustment — felicitous and otherwise — to human industry, transportation, and agriculture.

Brenndan McGuire, The River, 2010. Video loop.
Brenndan McGuire, The River, 2010. Video loop.

[Image via Cape Farewell]

Artist Brenndan McGuire spends most of his time in the music world, producing music and designing recording and concert apparati for musicians, and making music equipment out of discarded electronics with his company Gleaner Audio. This video, shot during an artist group expedition in the Andes in 2009, is meant to capture McGuire’s feelings and nostalgia for the untouched natural world.