News & events > Curating Cities | Sydney-Copenhagen
17 Nov 2011 - 27 Nov 2011

Curating Cities | Sydney-Copenhagen

In Curating Cities: Sydney-Copenhagen, five influential projects evoke the city as part of an ecology affected by human action. Each develops new ways of visualising the environmental impact of human activity or of promoting practical strategies for change. The exhibition launches a 5-year research project, founded in the idea of deploying art and design to curate (literally ‘care for’) the city. It focuses on the use of creative strategies to meet the challenges of creating eco-sustainable urban environments. This keynote exhibition Curating Cities: Sydney-Copenhagen highlights the fundamentals of sustainability: carbon reduction, consumption, and food production. In the central atrium of Customs House, Digital Urban Living (Denmark), construct a sculpture that changes colour and sound in response to the fluctuating levels of carbon across the city. Atmosphere—the sound and sight of CO2 is complemented by Natural Fuse—a network of carbon sinking plants, the life (or death) of which depends on the amount of C02 produced by the household appliances with which they are networked, created by Haque: Design + Research (UK). Exhibits from Co2penhagen (Denmark), including energy-generating bikes, offer a sampling of the world’s first C02 neutral festival, while Flooded McDonald’s, a stunning video installation by Danish artists Superflex, poetically evokes the impact of climate change on the kind of industries that have contributed to it. As a counterpoint to the apocalyptic Flooded McDonald’s, a project by Australian artist Natalie Jeremijenko xClinic Farmacy promises to turn any city dweller into an urban farmer (UFarmer), by demonstrating how we can eat our way to a biodiverCITY. The exhibition runs concurrently with Try This At Home (Object Gallery), which looks at how city-dwellers can exercise agency in response to climate change, recognizing that we are each designing the future through everyday actions. -- Curating Cities is a 5-year research project that examines how the arts can generate environmentally beneficial behaviour change and influence the development of green infrastructure in urban environments. Founded on the principle of using art and design to curate–literally, to care for–public space, the project places creative disciplines at the heart of the sustainability agenda. In doing so it advances an ambitious research plan for aesthetic practice, proposing ‘curating’ as a method for working through the practical concerns of sustainable living. Drawing on case studies from around the world, Curating Cities assesses the ongoing and potential contribution of public art to eco-sustainable development and the benefits to Sydney and cities in general.  The project provides a rubric for public art in relation to the fundamental domains of sustainable planning: energy, water, food and waste. Curating Cities will unfold through a series of public programs, encompassing exhibitions, labs, workshops and conferences. It commences in 2011 with Curating Cities: Sydney–Copenhagen, Customs House, Sydney and Try This At Home at Object, Sydney.   Source: Curating Cities