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Wenwen Liu/ Summer Issue

Wenwen Liu finished her bachelor’s degree at Huber University of Economics (2013-2017) in China and her master’s degree at Teesside University (2017-2018) in the UK. At present, she is doing her PhD study at Teesside University. Her work involves data visualisation, digital art, concept art, and game design. Wenwen has recently released her artwork online and offline from London galleries to international exhibitions on visual culture.

Real-Time Climate Coding

Real-Time Climate Coding is a time-based artwork. It integrates algorithm coding, Arduino, and digital technology to display temperature data in real time. It mainly consists of two digital screens and an online website. The irregular dynamic shape is displayed on digital screen 1, and its colour and motion are visualised by real-time temperature data. Digital screen two is divided into 1440 digital squares representing 24 hours daily, i.e., 1440 minutes. The colour data per minute obtained from screen one is displayed from left to right and from top to bottom on screen 2. When all squares of screen two are filled with colour blocks representing different temperatures, it will reset and start filling colour again. At the same time as resetting, the 24-hour colour data of this day will be uploaded to the online website for recording climate change. Through it, people can intuitively see the process of climate change in the past. In short, screen 1 shows the real-time observation of climate change, screen two records climate change in a day, and the online website stores long-term climate data. Through this work, people can better understand the relationship between man and the climate around them. In this work, the future is the critical point. What is the future? It is a concept that does “not-yet-exist” but is about to appear (Bloch, 2000); tomorrow is the future of today, while the present is the future of the past. Real-Time Climate Coding, as a metaphor for the future, is the future of the past. Throughout the development of human history, man has tried to attain a better life that is constantly becoming and revealing, and people have created various possibilities that did not exist at the beginning. Indeed, these possibilities are a state in which the world itself exists and a state of existence in the future of new things (Han, 2012). To meet the requirement of life, humans must constantly surpass existing social conditions. As a result, the requirement has become a drive that promotes the development of society and generates various possibilities, making humans never satisfied with the status quo (Han, 2012). Shortly, as a ‘not-yet-being’, the future awakens the hope for a better life instead of describing the existing. Real-Time Climate Coding depicts a future picture. Through it, people can directly see their contribution towards climate change, thereby encouraging them to take action for a speculative and sustainable future. Simultaneously, it records the process by that humans must constantly surpass the existing social conditions and pursue a better life. Indeed, people also can see the negative side of the future by Real-Time Climate Coding. That is, a future of inaction. Climate change is seriously threatening human security and development. Research shows that the GHG concentrations are expected to increase further by 2019. At this rate, GHG concentrations will force global temperatures to rise to dangerous levels (WMO, 2019). Through Real-Time Climate Coding, people can intuitively see the terrible pictures caused by the change of temperature rise and its impact on themselves. Concisely, everything is interconnected, what you have done will not only affect the ecosystem but yourself. This work develops a real-time discourse space related to daily life, where people can intuitively see the process of climate change. It connects human emotions with the surrounding environment, helps people observe and reflect on their impact on the environment, calls on people to pay attention to global warming and dialectically think about the relationship between humans and ecosystems. At the same time, as an alternative social imagination, it affects problem-based concepts and ideology through visual art display, redisplay and interpretation, responds to climate change and readjusts society to a sustainable future.


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