Saturday, November 1, 2008

Global Warming at the Icebox, Final Thoughts

In fourteen days, the exhibition Global Warming at the Icebox comes to a close. I strongly urge anyone to make sure they don't miss it. Props go to Philadelphia Sculptors for putting on one of the best exhibitions in Philadelphia in 2008.

Of all the exhibitions in the Icebox Gallery, Global Warming was the best use of the space in a group exhibition that I have seen so far. Typically, group shows in this space display the artwork so that the Icebox dwarfs and overwhelms it. By breaking the space up into separate sections, the work on display was undiminished, and viewers were able to fully appreciate each individual piece.

My main criticism of this exhibition is that none of the work on display suggested any solutions for global warming. Many pieces provided evidence of climate change, some expressed the poetry of environmental issues and loss.

However, I wonder, like any exhibition, how many people left the opening, got into their cars, and went home to make changes in their lives that contribute to a resolution? Was it an exhibition only for believers? It is clear now that there is no single solution to climate change; the way this problem will be resolved will be through multiple approaches, small changes made by large numbers of people. We do not just need artists to raise awareness of the issue; we need artists to reveal to others how simple it can be to reduce their carbon footprint.

To end this thread, I suggest to all readers to consider changing a light bulb. If 110 million Americans switched out one sixty watt bulb in their homes with a compact florescent bulb (at an approximate cost of $3), it will be the equivalent to taking 1.3 million cars off the roads (source: EnergyStar). Like I said, simple changes, when magnified by millions, have a powerful affect.

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