World Weather Network, a community of creatives reporting on weather and climate, has launched an international online exhibition that features a constellation of 28 arts agencies from around the world.
Dubbed as Weather Stations, each of the institutions demonstrate the respective country’s atmospheric condition through artworks, stories, reflections and images to create an archipelago of world views and voices. Thus, it better depicts the issue of climate change across multiple localities and languages.
The Philippine Weather Station is represented by Tropical Climate Forensics by Filipino trans-disciplinary artist Derek Tumala.
It is a virtual world that provides an in-depth look at the anchors of the crisis in the tropics across the past, present and a speculative future. It features a single crosshatch plane that holds biomes that float as seemingly independent entities. A world in its own right, each diorama encapsulates a timeline of climate decisions that led to the current catastrophe.
The collection includes Init (Heat), Bulkan (Volcanoes), Bagyo (Typhoon), Tubig (Water), Gubat (Forest), Komunidad (Community) and Obserbatoryo (Observatory).
It drew inspiration from the artist’s residency, through an Art Fair Philippines grant, at the Manila Observatory, one of the oldest meteorological observatories in Southeast Asia. Built by the Jesuit fathers in 1865, the scientific research institution immersed Tumala into archival research which eventually shed light on the shifting patterns of the weather and climate in the country and in the region.
For the project, Tumala brings with him a remarkable artistry that delves in the intersections of art, science and technology. His exploratory works, which mostly engage new media, have been shown at Art Basel Hong Kong, Salzburg Global Seminar, Tokyo Design Week and Beyond Time Residency Poland. He likewise initiated Mvltiverse, a group of multimedia artists that explores the wonders of moving images and STEAM/Projects, a collective of technologists and artists.
Tumala was commissioned by the Museum of Contemporary Art and Design (MCAD) of the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde, with support from the British Council’s Creative Commissions for Climate Action, a global program exploring climate change through art, science and digital technology.
The Philippine Islands: Tropical Climate Forensics is the first fully online exhibition of Benilde MCAD.
The 28 weather stations likewise include Lichens Never Lie in Grasse, France by Nicoletta Fiorucci Foundation; Robert Smithson’s Spiral Jetty in Great Salt Lake, Utah, USA by Holt-Smithson Foundation; The Library of Water in Stykkishólmur, Iceland by Icelandic Art Center; Coastline, Andes, and Rainforest in Peru by MALI-Museo de Arte Lima; NJAF Cemetary and Mesopotamanian Marshes in Iraq by Ruya Foundation; and Guiana Shield Rainfest, Guyana, South America by Sophia Point Research Center.
The Comporta Weather Station in Tomar, Portugal by Terra Foundation; Great Ocean of Kiwa in Auckland, New Zealand by Te Tuhi; Cloud Atlas – the Tang, Aranya Gold Coast in Qinhuangdao, Hebei Province, China by UCCA Center for Contemporary Art and Aranya Art Center; Seoul Weather Station in Seoul, South Korea by Art Sonje Center; Wodiwodi in New South Wales, Australia by Bundanon Arts Organization; and The Farm, Ijebu, Nigeria by Yinka Shonibare Foundation are also included in the map.
The climate emergency was likewise presented through the perspectives of diverse towns, cities, and countries, such as Turin, Guarene, and Venice in Italy by Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo; Fogo Island, Canady by Fogo Island Arts; Dubai, Jeddah, and Arabian Peninsula by Art Jameel; Basque Country in Spain by Artingenium Art Office; and Bangladesh by Dhaka Art Summit.
Other participating art agencies and institutions include Enoura Observatory in Kanagawa, Japan; Artangel in London, UK; IHME Helsinki/Pro Arte Foundation in Helsinki, Finland; NEON Organization in Athens, Greece; Office for Contemporary Art Norway in Oslo, Norway; POOL in Johannesburg, South Africa; The Waag in Amsterdam, Netherlands; SAHA Association in Istanbul, Turkey; and 32° East Arts Center in Kampala, Uganda.
The exhibition will run until July 2023.