As the World Burns

Photo by Nele Azevedo

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Just the other day I was whinging about a photo on the BBC website of an ice sculpture of a penguin (it’s in this slide show) surrounded by well-dressed, admiring urbanites. I thought: How cool, what better way than a melting sculpture to highlight the plight of polar animals. Then I read the caption. Something along the lines of: “An ice sculpture of a penguin as part of a campaign to encourage shopping in London’s West End.” Not a trace of irony there.

Now I see on Designboom the perfect, icy riposte. The thousand (give or take) ice figures of “Melting Men” by Brazilian artist Nele Azevedo has been appearing around the world since 2005, according to GreenMuze. Azevedo originally intended the installation of disappearing men as a critique of monuments in cities: replacing stone with ice, immortality with ephemeron.

Not hard to see why the installation has been reinterpreted, hijacked really, by those concerned for our warming world.

More photos of the melting men on this Flickr thread.
 

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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