Warming Warning: Welcome Art about Unwelcome Warmth

Installed on Harvard’s Science Center Plaza in October, David Buckley Borden’s artwork asks us to read, look, walk, sit, think and revisit until December 7.

“This educational installation is a co-creation of Harvard Forest Fellow David Buckley Borden and Harvard Forest Senior Ecologist Aaron M Ellison that combines art, environmental design, and science communication to convey global climate-change data and spur action on campus.” quoted from the description of their project on davidbuckleyborden.com

Warming Warning immerses visitors in a three-dimensional visualization of ongoing climate change. On one side, the > 1.5 F change (since 1880) in global average temperature is highlighted as a white-to-red heat-gradient. The other side illustrates different future scenarios of carbon dioxide emissions. These are the paths we can take now that will lead either to a fossil fuel-free future or to an increasingly warm and uninhabitable planet.” quoted from news in Harvard Forest site

““Warming Warning” represents climate change as a series of painted triangles constructed from hemlock timbers that were harvested and milled at the Harvard Forest. The structure, which measures 28 feet long and 12 feet tall, experiences shifts in shadowing and color-spectrum vibrancy as the sun rises and sets throughout the course of a day. ” quoted from HUGSD news report by Travis Dagenais

“The sculpture is designed to play on perspective: of time, displaying temperature change over decades, and of place, as its aspect changes depending on where the visitor is standing, the sun’s location, or current weather conditions.” quoted from article by Colin Durant

My photos above are from two days of wet or cloudy weather. I hope to revisit and post pertinent new views. Meanwhile below are links to sites with more dramatic photos, time-lapse videos and valuable information about this collaborative project. Come to it, if you can!

Key Resources

David Buckley Borden artist website

Warning: Warming Ahead, by Colin Durrant for The Harvard Gazette, November 2018

Public art installation “Warming Warning” engages timber, color, and shadow to stoke dialogue over climate change by Travis Dagenais for Harvard Graduate School of Design News, October 23, 2018

Warming Warning, news for Harvard Forest, FAS Harvard University

Aaron Ellison, Senior Ecologist, Harvard Forest 

Press release: Warming Warning — arts-science public art — on view at Harvard

Local Warming Warning programs include events at Le Laboratoire, Somerville Museum, Cambridge Public Schools Design Lab, Project Zero/Harvard Graduate School of Education, and the Science Center Plaza. For full event details visit: https://harvardforest.fas.harvard.edu/warming-warning








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