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01 Jun-02 Jun 2023

Feeling The Heat

  • Adults Only
  • Climate Change
  • Research

A visually spectacular triptych featuring rare thermographic imagery of Australian natural and built environments. In between, climate scientists are interviewed with their own thermal imaging equipment. They’re literally feeling the heat of the moment. The work explores a new approach to climate change communication. An infrared imager used to measure leaf temperatures during heatwaves visually anonymises these normally detached and objective professionals as heat data, allowing them to speak candidly, from the heart. How do the disturbing implications of global heating affect those tasked with studying it, on a personal level?

These scientists’ research often requires them “to think the unthinkable” as they venture to the far end of probability curves for a problem which threatens to make the planet unliveable for many species. Yet any expression of emotional responses remains largely taboo, lest it taint their empirical assemblage of evidence.

Scientists, for their part, often assume that given enough information, people will modify their behaviour accordingly. But provoking a response takes more than scientific consensus; an emotional approach is perhaps also necessary. By allowing scientists to speak candidly, this short film offers viewers an alternative, human window into an otherwise overwhelming issue.

Video triptych by Adam Sébire. See more of Adam’s thermographic work here, or his climate art videos here.