Climate-Inspired Artwork ‘Imminence’ Lights Up City of London to Inspire Public Action
LONDON: A new public art commission produced by Artichoke – the creative team behind the nationally-acclaimed Lumiere Festival – will light up Bloomberg Arcade in the City of London from 5th December 2019, to inspire climate action. Commissioned by Bloomberg Philanthropies and designed by NOVAK, in collaboration with Hazel Dunn and Ed Carter, the immersive installation will illuminate the full length of Bloomberg Arcade with shape-shifting projections highlighting the impact of human-led climate change on our planet.
As world leaders meet in Madrid for the COP25 climate change conference, the light and sound installation will invite the public to experience and reflect on animated scenes depicting the consequences of climate change as they unfold beneath their feet. Issues captured in the vibrant projected landscape and accompanying soundscape will range from deforestation and bee extinction, to coral bleaching and global warming.
“Bloomberg Philanthropies believes in the transformative power of public art and its ability to inspire and engage communities,” said Jemma Read, Global Head of Corporate Philanthropy, Bloomberg LP. “We hope this collaboration with long-standing Bloomberg Philanthropies partner Artichoke will inspire Londoners to take bolder action to address the climate emergency.”
“Even as we are bombarded with daily messages about the calamity that we are facing, we still find it all too easy to turn away,” said Helen Marriage, CEO of Artichoke. “Art offers us another language that can reach into people’s consciousness with fresh urgency. It is able to surprise and delight and at the same time transform the way people see the world and their role within it.”
As patterns run in a continuous sequence, an original, synchronised soundtrack produced by composer Ed Carter adds to the sense of constant motion and urgency. The score draws on climate and environmental data from 1880 to the present day, combined with recordings from the natural world that reference the changing visual imagery. The music reflects the alarming rates of change observed across climate indicators, including arctic sea ice volume, seasonal monthly temperature, global forest cover, and the decline in UK pollinating insects, among others.
Developed in collaboration with textile artist Hazel Dunn, NOVAK’s work draws on the tradition of textile design as a medium for storytelling, playing with geometric patterns, bold colour and texture. In Imminence, the striking juxtaposition between vibrant aesthetic and sombre subject matter encourages people to look twice and consider the reality of the climate emergency.
Adam Finlay, Studio Director, NOVAK, said: “We are honoured to have been commissioned to make this site-specific work addressing the most pressing issue of our age. We hope the visually stunning designs, narrative and soundtrack will resonate strongly with audiences.”
On view until 10th January 2020, Imminence is one of a series of Bloomberg Philanthropies-supported public artworks aiming to inspire climate action in cities around the world. Previous works in London have included Ackroyd & Harvey’s Beuys’ Acorns (July 2019) and Olafur Eliasson’s Ice Watch (December 2019).
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Notes to the Editors
Imminence will be open to the public at Bloomberg Arcade from 5th December 2019 – 10th January 2020. 4pm-11pm GMT, daily.
Bloomberg Arcade, London, EC4N 8AR
Producers of extraordinary live events, Artichoke is one of the country’s leading creative companies and is a registered charity, funded by Arts Council England. At Artichoke, we use art to undermine the mundane and disrupt the everyday and create a new kind of world that we’d all like to live in. Our most recent project, PROCESSIONS, commissioned by 14-18 NOW, was a mass participation artwork that brought tens of thousands of women onto the streets in June 2018 to celebrate 100 years of votes for women. Artichoke creates and produces Lumiere, the UK’s largest light festival, which has been staged in Durham every two years since 2009; in Derry~Londonderry in Northern Ireland as part of the celebrations for City of Culture 2013, and in London 2016 and 2018. https://www.artichoke.uk.com/
NOVAK is a creative studio producing innovative and ambitious art and design projects. NOVAK specialises in motion design and immersive experiences, encompassing projection mapping, art and museum installations, stage visuals for music artists and video accompaniments for theatre and dance performances. The work of NOVAK is often site-specific and on a grand and spectacular scale that transforms and reimagines locations into extraordinary displays of colour and motion. Informed and inspired by the location of the work, their designs are visually stunning, while also conveying geographically relevant historic and cultural narratives that resonate deeply with audiences.
NOVAK has presented work throughout the world and at some of the most highly regarded arts festivals, including the UK’s largest light festival, Lumiere (London, Durham and Derry-Londonderry) and the internationally renowned Singapore Night Festival. Their work has also featured alongside many critically acclaimed musicians at some of the world’s leading music events; including Glastonbury (UK), Coachella (USA), Fuji Rock (Japan) and Roskilde (Denmark). https://novak.uk/about/
About Bloomberg Philanthropies
Bloomberg Philanthropies invests in 510 cities and 129 countries around the world to ensure better, longer lives for the greatest number of people. The organization focuses on five key areas for creating lasting change: Arts, Education, Environment, Government Innovation, and Public Health. In 2018, Bloomberg Philanthropies distributed $767 million. For more information, please visit bloomberg.org or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Twitter.