How to participate as an artist in environmental protection
Extreme weather, global warming, environmental destruction These words are all too familiar now. I never knew before that getting used to it was such a painful thing. Even if you type on related keywords on YouTube or the Internet, countless content is pouring out. It's an emergency. Now many people are concerned and aware that they have a different attitude than they used to be. It is because it is so close to our daily life.
Environmental problems are serious because they are closely related to our lives and survival and, above all, directly or indirectly affect future children. When I was a child, I often heard adults say that you want a peaceful world without war or destruction when you grow up. I grew up in their beautiful wishes. So when I became an adult, I knew that I would live a beautiful life with the same hope for my children. But to be honest, I feel guilty about growing up. Because now I know that those words are being ruined to the point where they are virtually useless.
But before, I thought I had plenty of time left. It was believed that the Earth at 4.543 billion years old would not be destroyed so easily.
According to a major study, a 40% chance by 2025, the global temperature will be 1.5 degrees higher than pre-industrial levels in at least one year out of five. This analysis report was created based on modeling by the UK Meteorological Agency and climate researchers from 10 countries, including the US and China.
Due to the reports of these scientists and the efforts of related experts, many people are still more interested and are trying to save the rapidly warming planet. No, you don't have to start trying. You have to do something right now. This is correct.
Actually, I'm just an ordinary person who wants to draw away from the hustle and bustle of the world. My childhood dream was to wear a pretty floral dress and ride on a white bicycle with a basket in front, with painting tools on the back of it, and then get off the bicycle and paint when I saw a beautiful view. Especially I feel some trouble in life, and the burdens heavy under my shoulder, I would bring this little dream out of my head and get comfort from time to time. But as an adult, I realized that living like this would be impossible unless I was a millionaire. In particular, it is because someone must support a safe environment where women can run anywhere in a one-piece dress, and above all, economic situation to draw pictures and, finally, a clear, uncontaminated scenery is necessary.
One day I will feel that this dream was indeed a luxury. And I'm afraid I'll find out that it will be an impossible dream because the scenery that is more beautiful than money is disappearing.
As an artist, what should I do to participate in protecting and protecting the environment, even a little?
“There’s a crescendo of interest in both art that is itself about the environment and art that is self-consciously environmental, and I think that’s entirely understandable and good, because it draws attention to these dire situations we’re facing,” said Karl Kusserow curator of American Art at the Princeton University Art Museum.
And in fact, there are artists who, in the name of Junk art, Eco-art, art activists, etc., inform the public of the dangers of environmental destruction through artistic activities and create and display works of art using recycled or waste paper themselves.
Many of the artists who identify with the environmental movement have explored the relationship between mankind and the natural environment. These artists are often concerned about ecology, health, and human rights issues and dedicate their art to the these subjects. Environmental artists can also be found in connection to conservation and green politics. ( What is Environmental Art? By Renee Phillips Leave a Comment)
ROUTE USA is a 100% volunteer-lead organization looking for solutions to reduce the impact of waste on the beaches of America and the world. Their mission is to promote arts, community service, education and the awareness to preserve the health of the world’s oceans, beaches and marine life, specifically focusing on the problem of plastic pollution.
The Eco-Art project started in Italy in 2009. Artists interested in sustainable environmental protection movements such as climate change, environmental pollution, forestry, and recycling are jointly hosting international contests and delivering active messages through exhibitions and conferences. The online gallery ‘EAD (EcoArt Database)’ currently has about 1,300 works by artists from all over the world.
Climate change and our lives
Germany is my second hometown. I've been for 8 years and then even though it is not a long period to call hometown. However I spent all time my 30s there. Maybe that's why, my attachment was added with active 30s, and I was able to consider Germany my hometown for those years. Karlsruhe, a small and beautifully well designed city in southwestern Germany, gave a lot of vitality and motive to strangers who were always tired of life. And it is also the country that gave me an excellent opportunity to continue drawing like recent. I still miss Germany and love Karlsruhe, where I lived in. That's why I'm often more interested in news about the country. I wish Germany and Karlsruhe to be so picturesque and peaceful as always and forever.
But today, I have not seen good news, but sad news that breaks my heart. In Western Europe, water bombs are hitting the world record heavy rains in 100 years, killing dozens of people. Germany was no exception.
After the deadly heatwave in the US and Canada, where temperatures rose above 49.6C two weeks ago, the deluge in central Europe has raised fears that human-caused climate disruption is making extreme weather even worse than predicted. (source by Guardian news)
As feared, the earth is getting hotter and extreme weather are commonly occurring all over the world. With a lot of worries, everyone is concerned, careful and is trying to somehow delay this tragedy to close our door. But it is still unsatisfactory. This is not a problem that can be solved by changing only individual habits, but a structural systemic problem that requires changing social policies and regulations.
I depicted a deep concern about the environment, especially since my older sister is an environmental activist in Korea. As the environment deteriorates to the extreme, my older sister has to work non-stop without taking a vacation. I try to be careful and eco-friendly, but I have personal limitations. When I have to buy a toy for my child, a birthday present, or something like this, I feel secret guilt. Trying to avoid buying as much as possible, I struggle to live as my father taught me to think three times before buying. But I know that this is not a fundamental solution.
In the past, I had an exhibition on the subject of nature at the Pump House in Lauterbourg, France. Among the paintings on display, the picture called "Weeping Trees", "Burning trees" expresses nature suffering from global warming.
In particular, "Weeping Tree" reflects the worries and fears I felt about environmental destruction at the time. First, I draw mountains in the background layer by layer, then fill the brush with paint and lots of water and touched it in the middle of the canvas. Then, raise the canvas at a right angle, lay it down again, and repeat. This will cause the paint from above to naturally fall to the floor due to gravity. It is as if the canvas is crying. The sky expressed the pouring rain.
Someone told me this while this painting was on display. "You can see Noah's ark behind the picture." I first found out then. I can see a ship that looks like Noah's layered ship on the right screen if you look closely. It was nice to find an exciting point, thanks to him. This painting was sold during the exhibition. I want to talk about it like this, even now, because it was sold without time to tell the story behind it. and say thank the art lover.
And the "Burning trees" below expresses the trees that is burning due to an extreme climate. I'm not particularly eager to draw with intentions or beliefs. I am afraid that it will remain like a communist propaganda poster, and it is also because I wouldn't say that are artificially fixed in nature. But my concerns at the time made me paint something intentional. The trees are burned badly and the whole world is filled with red flames. But there are trees that stand tall among them. It is the irresistible strength of nature itself.
This painting was returned to me by an old woman who runs a studio, who was interested in purchasing it, but was unable to sell it. Currently hanging in her husband's school office.
These are the little things that I can do professionally, and other than that, there are other things such as using fewer disposable items, separating recyclables well, and protecting and loving the environment around me. Most of all, I am determined that we and our descendants should work harder to sustain life and coexist on this precious and beautiful planet for a long time.
In particular, in terms of environmental movement, artists make works by recycling waste plastic around them under the name of Junk Art and Eco Art Project, and deliver a message about nature conservation to the public. I will reorganize this content later and post it.
As an artist, I want to live by thinking about what I can do in solidarity with society and what I can personally practice first.
This issue cannot be overemphasized. If we always keep this in mind and live as a part of nature, one day the world will gradually change. And I hope that bad news like this will gradually diminish. It is hoped that the European region suffering from flood damage will be stabilized quickly so that many people can start again with hope.
Myungja Anna Koh