Art and climate change converge in Amsterdam

• October 16, 2012
Climate Oxide

Courtesy: Robert Van Waarden / Shiva Rimal, 2012. All Rights Reserved.

Guest blog by Robert Van Waarden, Photographer

“The power of us is so much stronger then the power of I. To make real change we all need to get involved.”

A Nepali Buddhist temple powered by solar energy, the devastating tar sands mining in Canada, offshore wind energy in the Netherlands; these are just a few of the images that are part of Climate Oxide, a new art project opening in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Created in collaboration with artist Shiva Rimal, ‘Climate Oxide’ is an attempt to interpret the corrosion of our national environments through rust, photography and industrial design. The idea for the project came about when I met Shiva and saw his work. When I first glimpsed the rust and metal that Shiva uses in his art, I was shocked by the simple beauty. I immediately saw the visual passage of time and degradation and connected it with climate change.

Climate Oxide – Trailer from Robert van Waarden on Vimeo.

Rimal, an artist and designer for some top Dutch companies, didn’t hesitate to collaborate. “When we met and talked about the possibilities it struck me how well we connected on a conceptual and practical level. After seeing Robert’s work I was only more eager to try to make this work. His art is very aesthetic and touches not only the eye, but, when you go beyond that it really shows his commitment to the environmental issues. The good cause and the way the rust fits within this concept was enough for me to start with our project. Without knowing where it would lead I was confident the two of us would make something of it, since we both have determined minds and love what we do”.

While I was born in Canada and Shiva in Nepal, both of us share Dutch nationality. This mutual and different identity is apparent in Climate Oxide. We drew upon experiences from our individual backgrounds to provide a personalised perspective of global climate issues. Images of Canada, Nepal and the Netherlands are featured in the exhibit.

As Shiva Rimal says, “With Climate Oxide we made something with a bigger meaning, something that goes beyond the work I (we) normally do. Our project helped me understand the consequences of certain decisions, choosing biological meat for instance. Now I hope Climate Oxide will raise awareness of our audience as it did with me.”

Our  ‘active art’ exhibition opens at the Kunstkerk, Prinseneiland 89 in Amsterdam on Friday Oct. 19, 20:00 and will run till October 28. If you are able to attend this show, we hope it serves to inspire more individuals to make these connections and work on building the future that we all want, then we have succeeded.

About Robert Van Waarden

Robert Van Waarden is an internationally recognized climate change photographer whose work was recently featured in the FORCE blog series here on TckTckTck. He and Shiva are actively researching more exhibit locations. They invite you to connect with them if you would like to bring Climate Oxide to a venue near you.


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TckTckTck is the online hub for the Global Call for Climate Action. The GCCA represents an unprecedented alliance of more than 400 nonprofit organizations from around the world. Our shared mission is to mobilize civil society and galvanize public support to ensure a safe climate future for people and nature, to promote the low-carbon transition of our economies, and to accelerate the adaptation efforts in communities already affected by climate change.

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