2017 Artist in Residence
Introducing Julie Sperling and her project, Climate in Pieces: From Art to Action
For her yearlong project as 2017 artist in residence, Julie Sperling will engage the community in an open dialogue about the environment using a series of mosaics.
"I have been creating mosaics that reflect changes in our climate for three years and have found that mosaic is a powerful medium for communicating about the environment," says Julie. "I am excited for the opportunity to engage more meaningfully with the community. Exploring the environment through art offers the chance to talk about local initiatives like light rail transit, local food and stormwater management."
Residents will have the opportunity to create a small modular mosaic symbolizing their commitment to take one practical action to reduce their carbon footprint. These community-made pieces will be used to create a larger mosaic representing the community's collective effort to protect our natural environment.
"This is the first time we have a mosaic artist as our artist in residence," notes Silvia DiDonato, manager, arts and creative industries. "We're thrilled Sperling will bring the community together to open a discussion about an important topic that touches all citizens who can get involved and share their efforts through visually stunning mosaic art."
Four mosaics will be created focusing on energy, transportation, food and natural stormwater management. Community engagement will consist of partnering with environmental organizations to engage and connect with residents at festivals, events and workshops. The materials used will be sourced locally to emphasize the connection to the community. The final exhibition will include the community-fabricated modular mosaics and a large mosaic showing Kitchener residents' commitment to the environment.
About Julie Sperling
Julie Sperling is a mosaicist camped out at the intersection of art, environment, science, and policy. She believes in the important role that artists play as advocates, activists, and change-makers.
Since 2014, she has been dedicated to the creation of an ongoing series of climate change mosaics. A passionate communicator and seasoned analyst on the environment file, she brings a unique perspective to activist art. As an artist who uses a majority of foraged and reclaimed materials (geologic, natural, industrial, urban, and more), her work has a strong connection to place.
Follow Sperling's blog and Twitter account @jsmosaics for updates by the artist.