S2E5 | Smog

S2E5 | Smog

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Hosted by Tori Hoover and Emma Vendetta

“I am working very hard, although this morning… I was terrified to see that there was no fog, not even a wisp of mist: I was prostrate, and could see all my paintings done for, but gradually the fires were lit and the smoke and haze came back.” When Monet wrote this in a letter to his wife in 1900, the term “smog” had not yet been coined. But the artist was certainly describing the eerie beauty of polluted fog. In today’s episode, Tori and Emma speak with artist Kim Abeles about her Smog Collectors series and talk to atmospheric scientist Anna Lea Albright about the surprising ties between Impressionism and climate change.

Kim Abeles, Selection of Presidential Commemorative Plates (1992)
Kim Abeles: “Dinner for Two in One Month of Smog” (2011)

Learn more about Kim Abeles’ work here: https://kimabeles.com

You can read Anna Lea Albright’s study here: https://www.pnas.org/post/podcast/impressionism-and-air-pollution

Also cited in this episode:

J.M.W. Turner, Rain, Steam, and Speed – The Great Western Railway (1844)

Rob Nixon, Slow Violence and the Environmentalism of the Poor (2013)

Leah Thomas, “‘I Can’t Breathe’ and the Inextricable Link Between Climate and Racial Justice” (2020)

Ben Zimmer, “The Linguistic Power of the Protest Phrase ‘I Can’t Breathe'” (2014)