Envisioning Environmental Futures

The McMichael Creative Learning team collaborated closely with artist Rajni Perera to create a new Signature Studio: Envisioning Environmental Futures. One of Canada’s most promising contemporary multimedia artists, Perera is known for innovative experimentation with mediums as varied as painting, sculpture, and photography to express her vision of imagined futures in which mutated subjects survive within dystopian realms created by the collapse of social, political, and environmental structures.

Environmental causes are particularly close to the artist’s heart, and she believes that creativity and innovation are necessary to change peoples’ behaviors and attitudes when it comes to environmentalism. While celebrating cultural hybridity and inclusivity, this mixed media studio encourages students to collaborate with their peers and creatively use their imagination to find practical and/or magical solutions to the current environmental crisis that would secure a brighter future for their generation.

The works produced by participants are inspirational and thought-provoking. In the virtual exhibition below, the McMichael is pleased to present a selection of works by students of this exciting program.

Emily Carr Secondary School

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When it comes to global issues there are so many with climate change, natural disasters, global warming, and pollution. I decided for my composition to make a suit that can detect any problems in and around the body. The eye glass is connected to the suit and shows a hologram of the body to visually show the person what the problem is. The mask on the figure is there for filtration purposes to clean and send in good air. This form of technology could be useful for anyone and under any circumstances.

We worked collaboratively to develop a piece of technology that enables people to know their precise location and temperature. It is complex fog and rain proof due to the fact that weather can be poor at times, where temperature dramatically increases and decreases. Due to its versatility and ability to perform well in a variety of weather circumstances, this piece of technology can be very beneficial to society. The technology piece is a pair of glasses that releases a mask and scarf based on weather conditions.  

I designed glasses that projected a person’s health conditions. The jewellery (earrings and necklace) will verbally communicate the person’s health conditions to the person wearing them that are sensed by the glasses.

This is an unfinished series of artworks portraying the air, the land, and the sea. The blue one portrays a combat boat on a sea full of dangerous sea creatures. The drawing on the marbled paper features a home on the shore inside a special field which allows things to grow in a dead landscape.

With climate change, natural disasters are becoming more and more common. Leg extensions that mimic the joints of giraffes and structure of insects in addition to long raincoats and curved hats would protect wanderers in flooded areas. This form of technology could keep people safe and offer them easier access to many resources available in these areas.

My artwork represents people’s ability to fight pollution. The land and climate people are living in is polluted with noise pollution. These headphones bind to the person’s flesh fighting off this pollution and allow them to communicate with others.

I feel in our day in age we are surrounded by social media. I have invented glasses that will block us from being stuck in the bubble of all the negative social media. This form of technology will allow teens to be more confident and to not compare themselves to others. They will have built more self confidence and not grow up in a negative bubble of perfection.

This artwork represents the happiness of individuals. It is meant to release endorphins when looked at and helps dissipate negative emotions.

I feel that more recently in our society, our phone screens are acting as a barrier from us using our eyes to see the world around us. These glasses allow you to take in the moment photos with a quick click instead of taking the time to find your phone and the moment has unfortunately passed.

This is an unfinished series of artworks portraying the air, the land, and the sea. The blue one portrays a combat boat on a sea full of dangerous sea creatures. The drawing on the marbled paper features a home on the shore inside a special field which allows things to grow in a dead landscape.

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