Long Horizons is a collection of personal reflections about art, artists and climate change. Commissioned by the British Council working with Julie’s Bicycle the piece includes contributions from Antony Gormley, Jay Griffiths, Professor Tim Jackson, Professor Diana Liverman and KT Tunstall.
Antony Gormley’s essay appears in The Guardian Review on Saturday February 13th.
Arts, Climate Change and Sustainability
Climate change is one of the defining issues of the age. It is affecting, or will affect, everyone on the planet, though differences in infrastructure and locality profoundly affect vulnerability. One size will not fit all and local communities will need to find creative solutions that respond to their specific vulnerabilities and needs. The impact of climate change will be social and cultural as well as environmental and economic, and solutions need to be social and cultural as well as technical and scientific.
Arts, Climate Change and Sustainability is a British Council programme aimed at harnessing the inspirational qualities of the arts, along with the trust felt towards artists, to demystify and energise the debate about climate change. By energising and invigorating others, it will help find creative and local solutions to the challenge of climate security and encourage the necessary behavioural change in the UK and internationally. Art and artists can help move the climate change agenda from intellectual understanding to emotional engagement, and then on to action.
Just as the challenge of climate change is international and inter-connected in nature, so is the global arts market, and any attempt to create change needs to happen on a global scale. The British Council, with its vast network, is one of the very few agencies able to create dialogues and communities of interest around this subject with leaders and opinion-formers in governments, funding agencies, NGOs, and our cultural analogues in the UK and worldwide. These institutions and individuals share an interest in the support and promotion of their artists’ work, and we will work with them to strengthen understanding of the role that artists can play in the fight against climate change, and the need to support and encourage that role. This will include working together to facilitate sustainable practices around the international presentation and touring of art and artists.