Highlighting ocean acidification through experimental alternative photography
"In as much as some scientific knowledge is public, it is photography that has made it so.
- John Galloway , theoretical physicist , 1992
My experimentation with the cyano-lumen process and repurposing of photographic waste acts as a metaphor to seek-out alternative approaches for an eco-centric future. The process of creating each image, surrenders control to the environmental conditions present at the time of their creation, ensuring each one is unrepeatable. By combining processes, from the time of the industrial revolution through to the modern day, along with mixing photographic chemicals using various pH’s of seawater, I examine the effects of changes to ocean chemistry over time.
As atmospheric CO2 increases, so too does the amount absorbed by our ocean, where the excess CO2 dissolves forming carbonic acid. Recent studies indicate that slight increases in acidity inhibit the growth of many marine organisms, due to the reduction of available carbonates needed for calcification. In addition their existing skeletons slowly dissolve. This will eventually contribute to a loss of biodiversity which could cascade through the marine food web, upon which millions of humans are reliant and entire economies are based.
Ocean acidity has increased by approximately 30%, since pre-industrial times.* It is therefore my aim to raise awareness and reach audiences who can bring about change by reducing human CO2 emissions.
The title ‘acidopHobe’ refers to the abundance of organisms reliant on a specific alkaline ocean environment, the health of which is integral to maintaining a balance that supports life on Earth.
* Source - National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Ocean Acidification webpage, 2021
- Click on image to see exposure information -