Artists and a University of Leicester geologist are to debate the present
and future Earth - at a London railway station.
The notion of the Anthropocene –that the Earth has entered a new geological
epoch defined by man’s impact on the environment – is currently being explored
by Gabo Guzzo, artist in residence at Banner Repeater, a Council-supported,
not-for-profit arts space on Platform 1 of Hackney Downs station, London E8.
'The image relates to the idea of merging of realities, a concept that I often address in my work. Also, it draws from Durkheim's thoughts according to which 'the impure is made from the pure. And vice versa.' Image Credit: Gabo Guzzo, 2012
Jan Zalasiewicz from the University of Leicester’s Department of Geology has
been a leading proponent of the Anthropocene concept, which was originally
proposed by Nobel prize winning atmospheric chemist Paul J Crutzen. He will
take part in a discussion about the Anthropocene at Banner Repeater on May 31,
alongside conceptual artist Rasheed Araeen, author of Ecoaesthetics: a
Manifesto for the Twenty-First Century, and chaired by TJ Demos, Reader in
Contemporary Art at UCL. Professor Crutzen has prepared a special contribution
for this event, to be announced during the evening.
Dr Zalasiewicz said: “What is happening to the world over the last century or
so can no longer be described as just another phase of human history, on an
Earth that will always provide for us, no matter how much we draw from it.
“We are set to live through a geological revolution that will transform our
planet forever, much as it was transformed when the dinosaurs were killed off by
an environmental catastrophe, sixty-five million years ago. And as Earth is
that cosmic rarity - a living planet - there really is no greater drama now
taking place anywhere, for many light-years in any direction.
“Art can help us see what is driving humanity to transform the Earth. And, it
might help us create a more stable future.”
Gabo Guzzo said: “We need to encompass natural science, social science, the
humanities – and an expanded sensitivity - to bear on the problems that affect
our planet and our lives.
“Solutions can emerge from wider public discussion at the intersections of
diverse creative and innovative thinking. I hope that a commonality of purpose
will bring us, as Earth’s inhabitants, to allow change to take place across all
domains of human life.”
The free event takes place on Thursday 31 May 2012, 7.00pm-9.00pm, and a
video will be available on the Banner Repeater website afterwards. Guzzo’s
artwork will be available to view until 10 June at the venue, which is open
seven days a week.