As part of the exhibition project, Dangerous Landscapes, a panel discussion titled “An Uncertain Climate: Alabama in the Age of Climate Change” will take place on September 21, 2021, from 4:00 to 5:30 p.m. in the Camellia Room on the 2nd floor of Gorgas Library, 711 Capstone Drive, on UA campus. Face coverings must be worn inside the library. Panelists will be:
- Christine Bassett, Scientist/Engineer III, for Cherokee Nation Businesses, supporting the NOAA Weather Program Office Subseasonal-to-Seasonal Program.
- associate professor of history and project co-organizer Dr. Teresa Cribelli
- artist and project co-organizer Assistant Professor Allison Grant
- Marshella Hood, an activist against environmental racism and a member of Black Belt Citizens Fighting for Health and Justice, in Uniontown, Alabama.
The panel discussion will kick off one of the project’s aims: to encourage conversations within Alabama about how climate change will impact the Deep South, a region expected to experience profound climatic shifts.
Dr. Teresa Cribelli and Professor Allison Grant have collaborated on the CARI-funded project culminating in the current exhibition, Dangerous Landscapes: Legacies of Nineteenth-Century Progress in the Age of Climate Change, that places contemporary photographs of chemical and fossil fuel industries in West Alabama by artist Professor Allison Grant in dialog with large-scale reproductions of nineteenth-century views of progress published in the 1872 two-volume book Picturesque America.
Panelist Christine Bassett is a scientist and engineer for Cherokee Nation Businesses, supporting the NOAA Weather Program Office Subseasonal-to-Seasonal Program. Panelist Marshella Hood is an activist against environmental racism and a member of Black Belt Citizens Fighting for Health and Justice, based in Uniontown, Perry County, Alabama.
“Climate change, the largest environmental challenge of our time,” writes project co-organizer Dr. Teresa Cribelli, “is the result of a continuous escalation of ideas of progress forged in the nineteenth century when coal-fired factories began churning out goods and combustion engines accelerated the movement of people and products across the globe.” To illustrate the contrasts and results of this escalation, the exhibition Dangerous Landscapes places historical renderings of the environment and industrialization alongside their contemporary legacy through photographs of chemical and fossil fuel industries in West Alabama by artist and Assistant Professor Allison Grant. This juxtaposition of present-day images and historical prints traces how the accelerating use of fossil fuels since the nineteenth century has contributed to the climate crisis.
Dangerous Landscapes includes a social science component that studies how critical readings of visual material shape individuals’ perceptions of history and the environment, conducted by Dr. Joan Barth of the Institute for Social Science Research. Barth will administer surveys to classes at UA to assess how the public understands visual depictions of the environment both in historical and contemporary terms.
Dangerous Landscapes: Legacies of Nineteenth-Century Progress in the Age of Climate Change is on exhibit now through September 24, 2021, at The University of Alabama Gallery in the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center. The project is funded by a Joint Pilot for Arts Research grant from the Collaborative Arts Research Initiative, an interdisciplinary, arts-focused research engine that maximizes the impact of faculty arts research.
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For more information about The University of Alabama’s programs in studio art and art history, visit our Degree Programs page.