Air pollution in Monet’s paintings and art for the climate
An analysis by experts from the University of Paris and Harvard University of more than 100 paintings by Claude Monet and William Turner found that their works depict the effects of air pollution during the Industrial Revolution. The paintings analysed date from 1796 to 1901. “Because of the pollution, the objects appear hazier, making it difficult to identify their edges. The scenery has a whiter hue because the pollution reflects visible light of all wavelengths,” says Anna Lea Albright of the Sorbonne.
Vienna’s Leopold Museum has decided to hang 15 of its paintings at an angle of the number of degrees by which temperatures in the places these paintings depict could rise if action is not taken against climate change. It is a campaign entitled “A few degrees more (will turn the world into an uncomfortable place)”. The paintings include works by Gustave Courbet, Egon Schiele and Gustav Klimt.
Storing some 6,000 manuscripts, the ancient libraries in Shinkit – a historic town in Mauritania, a UNESCO World Heritage Site – may disappear due to the expanding Sahara southwards. Some documents, including poetry and mathematical records, date back to the 12th century. There used to be 30 libraries in Shinkit, a thriving commercial and religious centre. Today, only 13 of them remain, five of which are open to the public. Will the manuscripts be moved to a safer place? According to one of the custodians, they should not be separated from the libraries, as they would then lose much of their value.