Artists picture an underwater future induced by climate change

A 1200-kilogram bright pink installation outside The University of Queensland Art Museum forms part of an Australian-first cutting-edge exhibition that shines a spotlight on the impacts of climate change.

Dive-in by Danish collective SUPERFLEX is part of the Oceanic Thinking exhibition, and Senior Curator Peta Rake said it highlighted diverse perspectives on the climate crisis and was inspired by research underway at UQ’s Centre for Marine Science.

“It’s the first time this artwork has been shown in Australia and follows SUPERFLEX’s recent commission by the United Nations to create a large-scale artwork for UN Climate Week,” Peta Rake said.

“Dive-In is an experiment in preparing for a future where climate change has caused sea levels to rise, and marine animals must live in environments originally created for humans.”

An integrative biologist helped the Danish team select the artwork’s shape and colour, and as night falls, footage of fish interacting with a prototype of the structure is projected onto it, bringing to life the artists’ vision of a sub-aquatic future.

Peta Rake hopes people will be moved by the warmth, passion, and provocative ideas brought to life by the works of many local and international artists which will be on display.

The work of Queensland self-taught artist Charles Callins, who took up painting in his 60s, will also be featured.

“These artworks and richly emotional multimedia works can bring new perspectives to an issue like climate change and its associated effects on communities,” Peta Rake said.

“People might think there’s nothing else for them to learn, or they’ve tuned out because it feels overwhelming, but art has the power to dramatically shift our perspective and our imaginations in unexpected new ways.”

Oceanic Thinking opens 19 February 2022, and runs until 25 June 2022, and entry is free.

UQ Art Museum manages and curates one of Queensland’s most significant art collections.

The “Oceanic Thinking” exhibition has been certified carbon neutral by Climate Active.

The Australian Government’s carbon neutral certification is the most rigorous and credible carbon neutral certification available and is awarded to businesses and organisations that have achieved a state of net zero emissions.

Further information and images are available in the media kit.

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