a Lament in Black Paint
With Christian Aid, Islamic Relief and Tearfund
Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, October 11th-25th 2021
This project visualises the impacts of climate change - frequent droughts, flooding and storms - on the world’s most vulnerable people. Every day, those living in poverty battle a crisis they did not create, because of inequalities of wealth and power.
I am choosing to dip these portraits in black paint as a confession of the responsibility which we, the richest nations, share for the climate crisis. The paintings are a call to action: that we must pursue climate justice for those most affected by our decisions.
To choose to destroy artwork that has been lovingly created is quite shocking. The question I hope we are left with is: why are we not more shocked at the damage we have caused to the poorest and most vulnerable communities in the world? Destruction of artwork is, of course, not a new idea. The shock value of Banksy’s “Love is in the Bin” and Oliver Jeffers dipped paintings have been particular inspirations for this project.
I am very grateful to Sally Foster-Fulton, head of Christian Aid Scotland, for enthusiastically agreeing to take on this project, and for having the vison to see that this needed to be bigger than just one organisation. Christian Aid, Islamic Relief and Tearfund working together so visibly is a powerful statement. We don’t speak on behalf of, but in solidarity with some of the poorest and most vulnerable people in the world.