Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Natural Disaster Visualization Art

As the east coast of the USA picks up the pieces, we look at how natural disasters can shape art. Breaking from the usual ways we visualize natural weather phenomenon, several artists have used disaster data as a source for creative projects that give us a different viewpoint on their prevalence and effects. Nature’s mood swings can severely alter landscapes, destroying cities and homes, throwing everything off balance, and art can offer us a way to look at these events with new insight. Despite the dire context of these works, they even prove to be quite beautiful.

In Wind Map, Martin Wattenberg and Fernanda Viegas have literally mapped the invisible, ancient source of energy that surrounds us.

This 3D printed model of a seismogram of the 2011 earthquake that wreaked havoc on Japan’s coast, one of the major natural disaster tragedies in recent history was created by Luke Jerram. The artwork measures 30cm x 20cm and represents 9 minutes of the earthquake.

Joanie Lemercier of AntiVJ was one of thousands who had their travel plans ruined by the massive volcanic ash cloud spouted by this Icelandic volcano in 2010. However, in addition to inconvenience, Lemercier’s obsessive checking of the news reports served as creative inspiration. He ended up turning his frustrations into a beautiful animation, which he created as a 2D mural, with added 3D effect using projections and shading techniques.

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