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The Melting Ice...


by Robert Moeller
Art New England Online, Apr 16, 2014

At the Tufts University Art Gallery, Aidekman Arts Center, is the exhibition entitled Seeing Glacial Time: Climate Change in the Arctic, curated by Dr. Amy Ingrid Schlegel, director of galleries and collections. Eight artists using photography, painting and video attempt to document the significant changes occurring in the Arctic region. Los Angeles-based artist Joan Perlman’s video, What Remains, was filmed in Iceland and is a meditative study of ice melting in seawater. The ice bobs in the soft waves, isolated and without any visual markers for scale or perspective. This isn’t an editorial but instead the recording of a moment in time. And the power of the video derives from information not provided, instead of what is on the screen. The melting is unique in thousands of different ways in thousands of different places, but surprisingly all the same. Perlman’s scaled-down vision is as affecting as any attempt to use reams of data around which to structure a debate.