Video: When art and climate tip over

STORY: A few degrees more. An exhibition entitled “A FEW DEGREES MORE – FEW DEGREE, DRAMATIC EFFECT” in the Leopold Museum in Vienna wants to make clear that this means an imbalance for the climate and life on our planet. Works by Klimt, Schiele and others were mounted on the walls here at an angle of a few degrees, 15 in total. Last November climate activists of the “Last Generation” smeared paint on the glass pane in front of a painting to draw attention to the urgency of the fight against global warming. That was wrong, says the museum’s artistic director, Hans-Peter Wipplinger. But: “We at the Leopold Museum want to make our contribution to these dramatic effects in the context of the climate crisis. We suffered from it ourselves due to an attack on our painting by Gustav Klimt ‘Death and Life’ that is hanging behind us. But we found it Way, the absolutely wrong way. We wanted to initiate something productive, something mediating, that is, to convey a message.” The exhibition was curated in cooperation with the climate research network CCCA. “Behind me we see the painting by Gustav Klimt, which he created in 1900, on Lake Attersee in the Salzkammergut. One of our most important paintings, which also hangs a few degrees crooked. When Gustav Klimt painted the painting in 1900 while on vacation, it was The situation is completely different. An ideal world, a place to relax for people. And meanwhile, in these 123 years, a lot has changed. The temperature of the water surface has risen by two degrees.” Scientific texts next to the works draw attention to global warming and its consequences. This New York tourist enthused, “This is really fascinating. I think it’s a great way to draw attention to an important issue. We’re so used to seeing paintings hanging straight. That’s why I thought first it might be an advertisement for the museum itself. Then I thought it’s an important issue. And I like the approach.” According to the United Nations, emissions must be halved by the mid-2030s if the world is to have any chance of limiting temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels – a key goal enshrined in the 2015 Paris Agreement . The exhibition, which wants to draw attention to this, runs in Vienna until June 26th.


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