AMY HOWDEN-CHAPMAN

Overwhelmed: New York City (2019)

In 2019, seven years after Hurricane Sandy, physical structures intended to protect housing, businesses, and other infrastructure from similar storm-surge flooding are now becoming a ubiquitous part of the urban fabric of New York City.

These images depict two examples of the City’s attempts to protect against climate-exacerbated severe weather events. Where Manhattan's southern tip touches the East River, temporary dirt filled mega-sandbags have been erected by the New York City Office of Emergency Management. Further north, concrete walls are being built around New York City Housing Authority buildings on Manhattan’s Lower East Side.






Displacements, (2019).

Behind “next-day delivery” is an international shipping network that accounts for 2.2% of global carbon emissions. Ground transport accounts for more. Largely hidden from consumers, the international shipping economy will be one of the most difficult sectors to decarbonize, not least because it transcends national borders.

Displacements responds to the ways these systems of transportation and the precarious labor they necessitate have become omnipresent while their costs remain unacknowledged. With today’s distribution model requiring that goods hover closer to consumers, trucks act like roving warehouses while workers sort packages on the edge of city streets. Climate impacts are labeled, scanned, rolled, lifted, loaded, unloaded, placed, and displaced.

Images, Instillation view,
Todo en ti fue naufragio,
The Angels Gate Cultural Center






Insults against a 1960s Environmentalist calls attention to the personal attacks made against writer Rachel Carson after her seminal exposé of the chemical industry, Silent Spring. The insults, slurs, and criticisms heaped upon Carson ranged from lifestyle put-downs “health nut” and “spinster” to more openly political statements such as “communist sympathizer.” These insults mark the genesis of the illogical divide between economic progress and environmental protection, while foreshadowing the other progressive movements that would arise to confront the sexism and homophobia faced by Carson.

All The News I Read About Climate Change In 2014. Artist book, Amy Howden-Chapman, with introduction by The News Paper Reading Club.

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