The Maldives Table is one of a series of pieces I have been working on about climate change. The top of this table is coconut palm plywood. The coconut palm is the national tree of the Maldives. The carving is a representation of the principal islands of the Maldives chain. The legs are the colors of the Maldives flag. The shape of the table, of course is a boat. And the Maldives is the first, or one of the first, countries that will fall under the ocean as sea levels rise.
The second piece is The Coral Reef Table, about bleached and dying coral reefs. This one was a collaboration with my wife, Karen, who is a ceramist who works with tile. She built the coral reef, mostly live, and partly dead. The body is coopered Bamboo plywood, and the base is anodized aluminum.
The third piece is the Golden Toad Reliquary. The golden toad of Costa Rica is the poster child for climate change caused extinction. They lived under trees in the cloud forest of Costa Rica, and would come out and mate like crazy, and the eggs would go into small ponds where they would hatch and grow before the ponds dried out. One year, a climate change forced El Nino made the rainy season early, and when the toads came out.....no ponds. One year 22,000 of these little suckers, the next year, one. So this piece is about the Sixth Great Extinction, which is in progress and partly caused by climate change. Spanish Cedar, clay imagery also by Karen, and aluminum and glass
The fourth is the Arctic Ice Reliquary, of turned Sitka Spruce, carved and painted wood (by my studio assistant Casey Gleason), aluminum and glass. I think no explanation needed on this one.
The next piece, in progress, is about forest fires.
Tags: Photo journalism
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