A Few Degrees More 22nd of March until the 26th of June 2023 LEOPOLD MUSEUM MuseumsQuartier Museumsplatz 1, 1070 Wien
Vienna’s foremost art museum, The Leopold Museum selects 15 paintings by iconic artists including; Klimt, Schiele and Courbet to be tilted at a gradient reflecting the effects of global warming on our planet, in partnership with climate research network CCCA (Climate Change Centre Austria) and Wien Nord Serviceplan. The Leopold Museum, with more than 8,300 works of art, houses one of the world’s most important collections of Austrian art from the second half of the nineteenth century and Modernism.
The 15 paintings selected for ‘A few degrees more’ are;
VIEW OF RAX MOUNTAIN – Koloman Moser
ON LAKE ATTERSEE – Gustav Klimt
THE TEMPEST – Ludwig Heinrich Jungnickel
ORCHARD IN THE EVENING – Gustav Klimt
HOUSES BY THE SEA – Egon Schiele
PRATER SCENE – Tina Blau-Lang
SETTING SUN – Egon Schiele
MOTIF FROM VENICE – Marie Egner
RAINY DAY – Koloman Moser
SURF AT RAGUSA – Emil Jakob Schindler
SMALL TREE IN LATE AUTUMN – Egon Schiele
COASTAL LANDSCAPE – Gustave Courbet
COUNTRY GARDEN WITH FENCE – Richard Gerstl
APPLE BLOSSOMS – Tina Blau-Lang
BOY AT THE SPRING – Albin Egger-Lienz
The curated intervention ‘A few degrees more’ has caused quite a stir, perplexing members of staff and visitors to the museum, and provoking a conversation on social media and national TV. Now the Leopold Museum reveals the reason behind the intervention: no, it wasn’t Banksy. 15 landscape paintings were intentionally put at an angle to represent the drastic effects of global warming due to climate change, and how nature is thrown off balance by it. Because a permanent increase in temperature by only a few degrees can reduce our quality of life on earth significantly.
For years scientists have warned about an increase of the world’s climate by over 1.5 degrees C. However, this information doesn’t seem to be impacting most people’s behaviour towards climate change. Why? Because it seems an almost unnoticeable difference for many. It’s too abstract as a figure.
To demonstrate the uncomfortable impact of just a few degrees more, the Leopold Museum has rotated paintings of landscapes and nature – from Egon Schiele, Gustav Klimt, and Gustave Courbet – by the exact amount that climate change will affect the regions they depict. And by doing so, demonstrated that a global increase of over 1.5 degrees C can have a devastating impact on our coasts, mountains, lakes and cities.
Under the ominous campaign motto “A Few Degrees More (Will Turn the World into an Uncomfortable Place)”, the Leopold Museum – in partnership with the climate research network CCCA (Climate Change Centre Austria), one of the nation’s leading institutions in the field of climatology and climate effect research – illustrates the sometimes catastrophic consequences that an increase in temperature by only a few degrees Celsius can have for the environment.
According to current calculations of scientists and climate experts, such an increase could cause natural landscapes such as those captured more than a hundred years ago by artists such as Gustave Courbet, Tina Blau, Gustav Klimt, Koloman Moser and Egon Schiele, to vanish soon. To raise awareness for the accelerating climate crisis 15 paintings in the museum’s collection were tilted by exactly the amount of degrees that prognostics predict temperatures to rise if significant counter measures aren’t taken, in the depicted landscapes, including the picturesque region of Lake Attersee, the Alps, and the Atlantic coast.
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