Warmer ocean temperatures prompted bleaching events of the world’s coral reef habitats, turning healthy colorful coral into weakened ghostly white coral, which is susceptible to disease and death. These changes are visual warnings of thermal stress caused by global climate change and are referred to as the “canary in the coal mine.” Climate change is a global ecosystem catastrophe and not a political issue. Takayama-Ogawa’s exhibition includes abstract figurative white coral reef sculptures and white lighting installations calling for the reversal of global warming.
Joan Takayama-Ogawa’s family has been involved with ceramics since the 15th century. She pays tribute to her Japanese and family heritage by utilizing their ancient ceramic forms as a guide. She contemporizes them by applying imagery from her American life.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website.