Art is arguably at its most effective when it reflects the pressing issues affecting the world. So it's all the more poignant that artist Tania Kovats’ new installation at the Manchester Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI), Evaporation, has climate change at its heart.
Opened last week as part of the global festival on climate change, ARTCOP21, Evaporation features three bowls containing solutions of salt and blue ink, which evaporate over time. This leaves behind a crust of salt crystals in concentric rings, mimicking the tides of the Earth: every time someone sees it, the ‘waves’ will have changed. Featured alongside this work is All the Sea, featuring glass bottles of water collected from the Earth’s 200+ seas by a global network of people determined to have these water sources collected in one place.
The project is the second to be facilitated by the ecologically-minded arts association Cape Farewell’s Lovelock Art Commissions. The titular James Lovelock's Gaia hypothesis posited that the world is an interconnected super-organism, and the state of the oceans a way of ascertaining the health of this system. Evaporation’s dried waves become all the more haunting in the face of rising sea temperatures, making the work a salient reflection of the possible fate of the planet’s oceans. Given the forthcoming UN Climate Change Conference in Paris in December, Kovats' sensitive and engaging work will, hopefully, help to spur a little more action in the fight against one of our generation's most significant – and divisive – global bugbears.