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Art Editorial

pillarsofdawn.jpg Coming soon: the end of the world

A new exhibition coming to the Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art is going really big on the post-apocalyptic stuff.

I’ve often thought that we were living through the best of times – I’ve never had to fight in a war; a new series of ‘The Crown’ starring Olivia Colman is nigh – but could we actually be living through the worst of times. Catastrophe stalks us, which is something the Canadian-born artist Kelly Richardson seems very interested in. Using a series of video installations and printed images she is exploring the changes humans have made to Earth. In her ravaged world every life form has been crystallised or carbonised, except for a sequence of solitary trees. The series of images and videos show us what at first seems like a fantastical future dreamt up in science fiction, but have actually been developed through conversations with climate scientists over the last decade, taking in new understandings of how trees and plants survive. Could WE be the Earth’s biggest enemy? (I’m excusing Olivia Colman, obviously).

Kelly Richardson: Pillars of Dawn, 29 March-25 May, Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art, National Glass Centre, Sunderland. www.ngca.co.uk