BY: CAROLINE ROLF
Tackling climate change or documenting our environmental destruction can be a challenging endeavor for any passionate person, but for Brooklyn creative Zaria Forman, she made it her life mission to convey the urgency of climate change through art.
“Behavioral psychology tells us we take action and make decisions based on our emotions above all else, and studies have shown that art impacts our emotions more effectively than a scary news report,” Forman explains in her Ted Talk.
The artist isn’t about to scold anyone for leaving the lights on or double bagging their groceries. Her methods are subtler, more personal and far more attention grabbing. Travelling as a child with her family to some of the world’s most remote landscapes inspires her drawings. These were first the subjects of her mother’s fine art photography and Forman quickly developed her own appreciation for the beauty of the sea and sky. Now, the visual artist creates meticulously detailed drawings of storms illuminating the waters of Greenland, vanishing icebergs from a trip to Antarctica and waves in the Maldives.
“Exploring the flat islands of the Maldives, I felt a dueling sense of power and fragility,” Forman says in an interview with panthalassa. Accompanying her on this trip was painter Lisa Lebofsky and filmmaker Drew Denny. From this experience, the trio developed Ice to Islands, a documentary about the disappearing landscapes and those most affected by the climate change.
“The head of the department explained, chillingly, that if sea levels rise 88 centimeters, 80 percent of the Maldives will be gone. According to current scientific predictions, this could happen by the year 2100.”
Her work highlights the contrast between the striking beauty of the natural elements and the frightening effects of climate change in an effort to create a clearer understanding of the crisis our planet faces. Forman’s art continues to evolve and take shape through drawings, painting, film, exhibitions, performance and education. If you would like to learn more about her work, Forman has some original pieces available as well as several prints available on ArtStar. You can also follow Zaria here. She tells the Ted audience, “If people can have a chance to connect emotionally to these landscapes, they will hopefully be inspired to protect and preserve them.”
Image Sources: thisiscolossal.com