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Ivana Damien George
Brooklyn, NY



ARTIST STATEMENT: I produced these images as part of journey in the Peruvian Andes with a group of climate scientists from Ohio State University Byrd Polar Research Institute. We hiked up to 14,000 feet and saw glaciers, azure green lakes, cold streams, wild flowers, and local people herding livestock and growing crops. I learned how climate change is causing the glaciers we visited to melt and why there is no longer enough snowfall to replenish them. Peruvians have historically relied on this melt water during the dry season for the needs of people and the entire ecosystem. The climate researchers are working to understand the hydrology in this ecosystem with the future goal of helping Peru adapt to the changing climate. I was inspired by what I learned while traveling with the climate researchers. In this body of work I used a glass vessel of water as a lens to photograph through. The use of the globe form of the vessel is meant to convey a visual association with the round form of mother Earth. By using glass I conjure the notion of the fragility of the planetary ecosystem in which all living beings play a role. Using water within to encapsulate and reflect the scenes, I create a visual metaphor to express the water resource issues associated with a warming planet. There is no computer manipulation of the images beyond minor color or contrast adjustments. The high quality glass encapsulates and reflects that which is behind it with some distortions. The mode of production also references the mechanical function of the camera lens and sight; the bowl acts as a lens to reflect the image upside down.
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  • Glacial Waters No.1
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    The glacier covered White Mountains in central Peru.

  • Glacial Waters No.2
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    A stream flows down from the glacier covered mountain above at about 14,000 feet above sea level.

  • Glacial Waters No.3
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    Grass fills the valleys between the glacier capped mountains in Peru and the local people practice subsistence agriculture.

  • Glacial Waters No.4
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    A view of target research glacier from our encampment in Peru.

  • Glacial Waters No.5
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    A research glacier and the melt water lake at 14,000+ feet in Peru.

  • Glacial Waters No.6
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    A near view of the Pastoruri Glacier in Peru.

  • Glacial Waters No.7
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    On the mountain sides in Peru below the glaciers local people grow corn among other crops.

  • Glacial Waters No.8
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    Grass fills the valleys between the glacier capped mountains in Peru and the local people practice subsistence agriculture.

  • Glacial Waters No.9
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    One of the research glaciers in Peru is reflected in the water bowl. I photographed it on the trail up the mountain to reach the glacier.

  • Glacial Waters No.10
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    The breaking edge of the Pastoruri Glacier, which is among the lowest altitude glaciers in Peru, and the smallest due to global warming.

  • Glacial Waters No.11
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    This unique bog landscape in Peru feels like a spongy springy mass underfoot. The tight clusters of plants are fed by the melting glaciers in the mountains above.

  • Glacial Waters No.12
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    On the mountain sides in Peru people grow food crops including wheat.

  • Glacial Waters No.13
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    A distant view of the Pastoruri Glacier in Peru.

  • Glacial Waters No.14
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    A geologist takes measurements in a valley below the glacier covered mountains in Peru.

  • Glacial Waters No.15
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    Researchers prepare to extrude a lake sediment core taken from a glacier melt water lake in Peru. The sediment layers will be studied to understand the past climate conditions.

  • Glacial Waters No.16
    2014
    Digital Print on 100% Archival Cotton Paper
    14x21 and 24x36
    Two graduate students take a water sample from a stream fed by glacier melt water in Peru.
 








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