Climate Culture

Jonathan Bray

Took in a session by the Cape Farewell project at the Latitude festival in the Summer.

Cape Farewell is taking a different tack on climate change – infiltrating climate change into the culture and the arts through taking artists of all stripes to the arctic on sailing ships. And then letting them respond to that as they wish. And gradually that seeps out of their work and into the culture. Prompting a cultural response to climate change gives the issue new and deeper dimensions – rather than just the hard surface exchange of opinion and fact in the media. And hopefully triggering something deeper and ultimately more rooted than the usual responses of helplessness or denial than the hard science and media coverage can provoke in people. Artists who have taken the trip include Jarvis Cocker, Anthony Gormley, Ian McEwan and Rachel Whitehead and Marcus Brigstocke. It was clear to me from the films and talks at the Cape Farewell event at Latitude that this project will be successful in subtly but significantly permeating the culture. Jarvis Cocker was one of the people who took part in the Latitude event and it was obvious the trip had a profound effect on him as it did on the others who took part. One of whom was a remarkable human beat box called Shlomo (who had also been on a Cape Farewell trip). Here are they finishing off the event with a cover of Purple Haze!

Note – all the ‘musical instruments’ you can hear other than the guitar is Shlomo


Jonathan Bray