Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
KPBS Midday Edition

Exhibit Features Art Of Climate Change Science

A photo of a marble sculpture by Lileane Peebles titled Tipping Point, 2016.
Courtesy Photo
A photo of a marble sculpture by Lileane Peebles titled Tipping Point, 2016.
Exhibit Features Art Of Climate Change Science
Exhibit Features Art Of Climate Change Science GUESTS: Tatiana Sizonenko, art curator Alexander Gershunov, science consultant

The old saying goes in a picture is worth 1000 words. There have been more than 1000 words sent and published on climate change but still the message has failed to get through to everyone. Scientists have reached out for help from visual artist to create an exhibit that combines the two. It is cold weather on steroids. The features mosaics, photographs and art installations that illustrate the effects of climate change through art. Joining me is Tatiana Sizonenko . Welcome to the program. Thank you so much for inviting us to speak today. Also here is Alexander Gershunov , associate research meteorologist, Scripps Institution of Oceanography . Welcome to the program. Thank you. You developed the concept for this exhibit. How did the idea developed? It started with the collaboration and two of us got together and Sasha is my friend so we had been talking about his research and my interest in visual arts and on the beach Sasha said why don't we do a collaboration. So we approached the director. He recognized immediately the value of the proposal in the exhibition and the vision was to eliminate the issues and misconceptions of climate change. To help communicate and reveal that climate change is real. Even though you came up with this idea with Tatiana. Was it difficult to picture how your research would inspire art? That came gradually. I think -- one reason that climate change is a misunderstood issue is that scientists was study and understand it. We publish our research results in these journal articles that no matter how well-educated cannot read without a lot of training. No matter what your age or cultural background art is a tool for communicating ideas. You've done research about atmospheric rivers. Tell us how your work helped inspire a large piece of sculptural art. So climate change is making a rainfall list frequent. The extremes of becoming more extreme. They are meteorological weather patterns. They become more moist as the atmosphere warms. This is an idea that was used by an artist by the name of Oscar Romo to create a globe that's actually outside for the materials to weather. It's rusted and it's four or 5 feet in diameter. And they have moisture made out of bottoms of -- bottles that were found in a river so it's made out of materials. There is another art installation they portrayed a woman that is life-size and one is called dissolution. When you look at it, you feel the impact of sealevel rise on us. There's another one called dost when you look at it, you feel parched. It represents the impacts of he waves on human health. You already had this exhibit out that the LaFoille society -- La Jolla study was prepared in advance. Since at that announcement has been made, has it added a new dimension to this exhibit, Sasha? This exhibition was 2 1/2 years in the making so we could not have envisioned the help to the Trump administration would provide to us increasing the interest in this very politicized issue. Scientists are not politicians. Science is about facts and it seems to me that Mr. Trump and his comrades have a problem with facts on basic level. It is not specifically was science. As an artist, what further dimension does the fact that we are now out of this international climate accord add to this exhibit? I think it is very important. The whole idea behind it was that all of this misconceptions of climate change wanted to communicate and while going to the project we realize that Ms. concessions are even larger -- misconceptions are even larger. They are not understood by the general public. We were propelled to communicate the ideas but now it becomes even more reason because of the political circumstances that this exhibition may contribute significant with the complex ideas and help to reveal the climate change overview. I've been speaking with Tatiana Sizonenko and Alexander Gershunov. The free exhibit opens this Saturday, June 10 at the San Diego central library. Thank you so much to the both of you. Thank you. Thank you.

Climate change science and art collide in a new exhibit that opens this weekend at the San Diego Central Library.

"Weather on Steroids" brings artists and scientists together for an exhibit that features mosaics, photographs and art installations that illustrate the effects of climate change through art.


“Artists are arguably the most effective at communicating complex ideas on many levels,” said Alexander Gershunov, a research meteorologist at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, in a press release. “Climate change impacts us all but it is broadly misunderstood, partly due to scientists not effectively communicating the results of their research to the public. I'm so happy that the collaboration of art and climate science has resulted in a meaningful, timely and beautiful exhibition.”

Gershunov worked with artist Oscar Romo to create a globe-shaped sculpture using recycled materials to portray the meteorological weather pattern known as atmospheric rivers, which become more extreme as the planet warms.

Tatiana Sizonenko, the exhibit's curator and Alexander Gershunov, research meteorologist at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, preview the exhibit Thursday on Midday Edition.

Weather on Steroids

When: June 10- Sept 3

Where: San Diego Central Library

Cost: Free