The science of climate change is generally communicated through screen-based visualisations, graphs and other technical forms. However, we know from research that people respond poorly to information-heavy diagrams, seeing little connection between the abstract data values they represent and the ‘natural values’ of the ‘subjective climate’ they experience. Our encounters with climate science are also swamped by noisy information environments that fight for our focus, muffling urgent environmental signals and stymieing public engagement. Tom Corbys and Giles Lanes research seeks to breakthrough these walls by re-establishing a sensory and emotional connection to the sites, oceans and atmospheres captured but obscured by the abstractions of climate data. They propose that climate data possess additional emotional content or feeling, which can be deployed in ways that give it a new life and public agency Using sustainable technologies, they translate this data into physical artworks and animations of dimensionality, texture and surface that can be shared, touched and experienced at human scale. They posit the material presence of this work operates as a lure or visceral short cut, enabling audiences to establish their own emotional connections with the complex forces at work behind the data.
Central Saint Martins University of the Arts London
Giles Lane FRSA is an artist, designer and researcher. He founded and co-directs non-profit creative studio Proboscis since 1994. His work focuses on storymaking, strategic design, social engagement and co-creative participation.
Giles has been a Research Associate of the Human Centred Computing group at University of Oxford; the Crucible Network at University of Cambridge; the Extreme Citizen Science group at UCL; Pervasive Computing Group at Birkbeck UoL; and Media@LSE at the London School of Economics. He was a Research Fellow at the Royal College of Art (1998-2002) and a Visiting Tutor in Design at Goldsmiths UoL (2007-10).
In 2019 he co-founded the Manifest Data Lab at Central Saint Martins University of the Arts London, where he is now a Visiting Research Fellow.