TurbulentWorld: An Artwork Indicating the Impact of Climate Change

Screen capture from the artwork as it shows the average surface-air temperature across the world for September 2067, using the projected values generated by the CM2.1 model developed by the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory. - A. G. Forbes, EVL

Authors: Forbes, A. G.

Publication: In Proceedings of the International Symposium on Electronic Art (ISEA), Vancouver, Canada, pp. 189-1-4

This paper describes an artwork created in response to a question about the role of the artist in communicating climate change issues. The artwork, titled Turbulent World, incorporates turbulence and surprise as a means to visualize the potential instability of our culture and the environment due to climatic changes indicated by increased worldwide temperatures. The artwork makes use of a custom fluid engine that can represent any amount of turbulence and energy. A dataset encoding a simulation of rising surface-air temperatures over the next century is mapped to the turbulence system; and the visualization is updated as the months and years flow by, based on the projected temperatures at different areas of the world. That is, the increased turbulence of the system causes a representation of a map of the world to become distorted in different ways. A secondary view is overlaid, showing numerical data and providing a more dispassionate display of the inexorable increase in world temperature.

Keywords: climate change, art-science, software art

Date: August 14, 2015 - August 19, 2015

Document: View PDF

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