Climate Change – An Aesthetic Crisis?

This blog was originally posted on the website Valuing Nature.

Alan Boldon (Director MA Arts and Ecology, Dartington College of Arts, UK and Associate Curator, Arnolfini, Bristol, UK) writes that “it is established that we are in the midst of an ecological crisis. I would argue that we also find ourselves in aesthetic crisis and that these two states are fundamentally related.” Read the full text of the presentation he made last month to a conference on art and ecology at Helsinki.

Tom CromptonClimate Change – An Aesthetic Crisis?

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  • Alison Harris - August 8, 2008 reply

    I feel the concept of objects having a soul is interesting. It occurs to me that there could be a relationship between the increase in mechanically made goods, (that could be thought of as souless,) over the years of technological advancement and us valuing them less. Not because they have become cheaper because of the ability to mass produce but because of a perceived human disconnection.

    I would like to suggest that if we are detached from how something was made, for example we believe a plastic cup was made by injection moulding machine without much human input that we value it less than something that was hand crafted, or that we know was made by a person? Do things that we are conscious of being made by a person have more emotional attachment value?

    If we had a better concept of the work involved in many of the things we use and buy would we have more respect for them and therefore be more careful in our use of them?

    When items are more valued this changes our attitudes towards disposing of them, therefore leading to less consumption (we keep them and use them for longer) and also when it comes to disposing of something it is done in a more considered way. For example we may be more likely to hand it down to someone who will also value it.

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