Archive for April 25, 2015


polar

The Arctic is the “canary in the coal mine” of global warming. Over the past 50 years Arctic winters have gotten a whole lot warmer,rising in temperature by an average of 6.3 degrees Fahrenheit. With the region warming twice as fast as the rest of the world, changes in the Arctic are providing a preview of what is to come if climate change is not stopped. The picture is not pretty: the Arctic is suffering increasing coastal erosion, more acidic oceans, earlier spring snowmelt, drier landscapes, and more extensive wildfires. Significant habitat changes are also pushing many species—including the iconic polar bear—to the very brink of extinction.

The United States is taking over chairmanship of the Arctic Council at a challenging and critical time. Thanks to melting sea ice caused by climate change, the Arctic is opening up. This means that Arctic nations could soon begin sparring over new shipping routes and access to remote oil and gas deposits. At the same time, the region is being hit hard. Climate change is directly impacting the Arctic ecosystem. Rising sea levels are upending coastal settlements, while gas flaring is coating sea ice in a nasty layer of black carbon that speeds the melting  causing over a million premature deaths each year from respiratory and heart disease.

If the United States wants to protect the Arctic from climate change, it can’t allow any more oil and gas drilling in the region. The Obama Administration has a unique ability to use its chairmanship of the Arctic Council to chart a new course for climate leadership in the region. According to a peer-reviewed study recently published in Nature, the world must choose between drilling for Arctic oil and maintaining a safe, liveable climate. Showing leadership on climate means cutting carbon emissions—not greenlighting oil companies’ risky plans to place new drilling rigs in the Arctic Circle.

Coverage

 

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Beijing’s political role, historical narrative, geographical structure, and cultural memory culminate in a city where people share a common experience of culture and emotions. At the same time, Beijing’s unbridled growth can feel unfamiliar, a surreal mix of globalization and localization that has allowed Beijing to build its own traditions, becoming an extremely competitive art hub in the process. Yet there are moments where it diverges from this path. LEAP’s April issue, “The State of Beijing: A Report,” looks at the art capital from the perspectives of architecture, geography, exhibition history, and more, shedding a light on the the rawness and weirdness, authority and gravity that Beijing brings to the table.

This issue’s middle section introduces two important artists as well as new theories: Yuko Mohri’s electro-mechanical sound installations, Timur Si-Qin’s renditions of commercial objects and imagery through a neo-materialist lens, and musings on neoreactionary thoughts and Dark Enlightenment . Einar Engström investigates Mohri’s art via contemporary dynamics — her objects acting as intermediaries and persuading physical forces to reveal a natural order we are simply not accustomed to seeing; Lai Fei interviews Si-Qin, who describes China as a “giant processor of materials,” which may be the Beijing to come; and Matthew Shen Goodman adopts a new philosophy to examine the future of Beijing—a fragmented city-state that is fundamentally unknowable.

This issue’s bottom section features a total of 14 exhibition reviews, including “2015 Triennial: Surround Audience,” “Sharjah Biennial 12: the Past, the Present, the Possible,” “On Kawara: Silence,” “New Measurement and Qian Weikang: Two Case Studies in Early Chinese Conceptual Art,” as well as other major international exhibitions. In addition, you will find reviews of new work and solo exhibitions from Wang Gongxin, Huang Yong Ping, Ding Yi, Zeng Hong, Yang Xinguang, Mark Bradford, and Robert Zhao Renhui, among others.

艺术界 LEAP 32

 

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