Pacifc Eco-Art is an ongoing collaboration of artists and staff from the Oceania Centre for Arts, Culture and Pacific Studies of the University of the South Pacific and the 'Fiji Field School,' a group of students from Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia.
The current exhibition, 'Cli-mat: Weaving climate awareness through art,' housed in a virtual gallery on this site, includes painting, photography and multimedia, in addition to sculptures, assemblages, and woven mat-based art, all using recycled rubbish and other found materials. These works explore the effects of climate change and environmental challenges faced by Fiji and other Pacific nations, including sea level rise, mangrove degradation, and pollution.
Climate change poses severe challenges for the Pacific Islands in particular; artists can help us to think creatively about how we can adapt and raise awareness of these important issues in innovative ways. For the artists, working with recycled materials and using techniques that can be unfamiliar, challenges them to develop new skills. Art fashioned from rubbish and cast-off objects encourages us all to pay greater attention to our environment and find new uses for old objects.
This website and the exhibition also present visual art and multi-media by students of Macquarie University, who are participating in the class, ‘Field school in anthropology: Fiji.’ The ‘field school’ class is made possible by a grant from the Australian government under the New Colombo Plan. Macquarie University and the Australian government want students to gain experience in Asia and the Pacific, so that Australia can better cooperate with the region in the future.
“Oceania is vast, Oceania is expanding, Oceania is hospitable and generous, Oceania is humanity rising from the depths of brine and regions of fire deeper still, Oceania is us. We are the sea, we are the ocean…”