Nighttime Art Installation Illuminates Climate Change in Downtown Anchorage
February 07, 2020
ANCHORAGE, ALASKA – Feb. 3, 2020 – “Cloud Chamber,” created by Kerry Tasker, is an art installation that will project illuminated images of glaciers and other natural forms at night in the form of photography and video. These projections can be seen on building exteriors and parking lots around Anchorage, Alaska, and depict the vastness of Alaska’s landscape. This project highlights the rapidly changing landscape within an urban setting.
“Cloud Chamber” is a project of SEED Lab, which is both a physical space and a series of public art projects, conversations and gatherings for envisioning possible creative responses to climate change. SEED Lab is one of the five winners of the Bloomberg Philanthropies Public Art Challenge, partnering the Anchorage Museum with the Municipality of Anchorage.
“Cloud Chamber” was first projected outdoors at night on the Anchorage Museum’s glass and mirror façade during December 2019, when the sun sets around 3:30 p.m. From Feb. 5 - 10, the projections move to the exterior of the Alaska Center for the Performing Arts, in a collaboration within downtown Anchorage that brings the installation into the heart of the city.
“I’ve taken a shine to this project,” says Anchorage Mayor Ethan Berkowitz. “It illuminates and highlights the effect of climate change on Alaska in a way that provokes awareness and thought about its impact on Alaskans.”
Julie Decker, director of the Anchorage Museum, Alaska’s largest museum, emphasizes the importance to a community of having a sense of place when facing future climate challenges. “We’re bringing the natural world back into urban places in order to connect and re-connect us to the landscape,” said Decker. “Other projects include an urban reforestation project (portable forest) to bring trees back to Anchorage’s downtown, and curated climate walks to remind us of the impact of our daily life on the surrounding environment.”
The “Cloud Chamber” installation will move to several other buildings and spaces throughout Anchorage in March and April.
“Cloud Chamber” is part of SEED Lab’s series of art installations and projects that examine the climate change in the North through education, research and public engagement. Last fall, SEED Lab engaged artists and designers to create large-scale installations around Anchorage, collectively titled in the Dena’ina language “Hghu Hghazdatl (They All Gathered),” to encourage people to gather, share ideas and reflect upon Indigenous values relating to the land. Ongoing SEED Lab projects include “Mending,” a repair and reuse workshop led by Anchorage Artist Amy Meissner, who facilitates tutorials and discussions around developing skills like sewing to foster a repair and reuse culture. Upcoming projects include an installation of small vertical-axis wind turbines within the city of Anchorage by Icelandic inventor Daniel Farb, and “Spark,” a large-scale sculptural installation responding to the effects of forest fires in an age of global warming by Seattle-based environmental artist John Grade.
Read About SEED Lab Artists:
Articles on Kerry Tasker
Cloud Chamber by Kerry Photographer Kerry Tasker Opens at Akela Space (Anchorage Press)
Kerry Tasker: The Wild and Rugged Beauty of Alaska (Atlas)
Articles on Amy Meissner
A New Mythology: Interview with Textile Artist Amy Meissner (Create Magazine)
Amy Meissner Gives New Life to Objects Destined for Oblivion (Mat-Su Frontiersman)
Articles on John Grade
Rainwater Collecting Installation by John Grade Dazzles Like An Outdoor Chandelier (Colossal)
Natural Capital: John Grade’s Dazzling, Decomposing Artworks (World Economic Forum)
About the Public Art Challenge:
In February 2018, Bloomberg Philanthropies invited mayors of U.S. cities with 30,000 residents or more to submit proposals for temporary public art projects that address important civic issues and demonstrate an ability to generate public-private collaborations, celebrate creativity and urban identity, and strengthen local economies.
More than 200 cities applied for the 2018 Public Art Challenge with proposals reflecting diverse artistic mediums addressing a range of pressing issues and social themes such as community development, environmental sustainability, cultural identity, and immigration.
Five cities won the Public Art Challenge: Anchorage, Alaska “SEED Lab,” Camden, New Jersey “A New View,” Coral Springs in partnership with Parkland, Florida for “Inspiring Community Healing After Gun Violence: The Power of Art,” Jackson, Mississippi “Fertile Ground,” and Tulsa, Oklahoma for “The Greenwood Art Project.”
# # #
Photos Press Use
Photos of “Cloud Chamber” are available for use in this this Dropbox folder. All the images provided are free to use for editorial purposes and are downloadable. Photo credit listed on the image.
Kristin DeSmith, Communications Director, Municipality of Anchorage
Jeanette Moores, PR & Marketing Manager, Anchorage Museum
Janet Asaro, Chief Communications Officer, Anchorage Museum