SALEM, MA — Two new exhibits designed to raise awareness of the urgency of climate change and environmental issues are set to open at the Peabody Essex Museum in April.
Exhibition openings are scheduled to begin around school holidays and Earth Day.
The exhibition Climate Action: Inspiring Change opens April 16 and runs through July 30. Peabody Essex said it “brings together vibrant contemporary art, hands-on experiences and inspiring works by young artists to help us make a difference for the planet”.
Konstantin Dimopoulos: The Blue Trees is described as an environmental call to action in the form of a participatory installation. Using biologically safe watercolor and a team of
community volunteers, the artist temporarily transforms a selection of trees on the PEM campus to draw our attention to the growing problem of deforestation and other threats to trees around the world.
Installation of this exhibit will begin on April 20 with the launch of PEM’s April School Vacation Week: Earth Week – Art in Action.
“Young people around the world are leading the way in an equitable transition to a zero-carbon future,” said Jane Winchell, Sarah Fraser Robbins of PEM, director of the Dotty Brown Art & Nature Center and curator of the exhibit. “They ask courageous questions, protest environmental injustice, start community climate projects, and share their climate hopes and fears through the power of art and creative expression.
“Their determination shows us that now is not the time to despair, but the time to come together to create a culture of optimism and possibility.”
Winchell said the exhibits are meant to spark discussion and action around critical issues that remain an afterthought for many.
“The majority of Americans care about the climate, but only a small percentage of us actually talk about it or know how to have a positive impact,” Winchell said. “Weather
change is an issue that touches and connects us all, no matter who we are or where we live.
“While we are all affected, we are not all equally affected. Studies show that the negative health and energy burdens caused by climate change disproportionately affect the poor and people of color. Our choices and actions regarding the environment will require imagination and vision, and the actions we take today will have far-reaching ramifications.
“The goal is for each of us to overcome our fear and feelings of helplessness and make informed choices to move forward in a positive way. Collectively, as a growing community, we can take actions that will help create a climate stable and fair for the environment. future for all.”
(Scott Souza is a Patch Editor covering Beverly, Danvers, Marblehead, Peabody, Salem and Swampscott. He can be reached at [email protected] Twitter: @Scott_Souza.)