Climate change is on everyone’s minds and we all have our own way of confronting it.
Anja Studer is taking climate action through her art.
On the evening of Sept. 27, in conjunction with the international climate strike, Swiss-born local artist Anja Studer held a reception for her latest exhibition, Protect What You Love.
“It’s a series of works that’s essentially a call to humanity to protect our planet and its wildlife,” said Studer.
“With the climate crisis, it’s really been weighing heavy on me over the last few years, and normally what weighs heavy on me comes out in my art.”
Each piece featured in the Protect What You Love gallery is an abstract encaustic painting of Manitoba wildlife which is integrated with background patterns of the threats to that specific animal.
“Encaustics are a very ancient way of painting with beeswax and dammar, which is sap from trees, and then you put pigments into it,” said Studer.
Originally the mountains and valleys of the Swiss Alps inspired her art. Now, she draws inspiration from Manitoba’s nature.
“When I came here, it was so opposite, because it’s the Prairies and it’s so flat, but it’s beautiful in its own way,” said Studer.
“There’s so many lakes here and the wildlife here is amazing. We don’t have the wildlife in Switzerland that we have here.”
Ten per cent of sales from this show will go directly to the Prairie Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre.
“I feel a strong urge to protect what provides me this inspiration everyday,” she said.
Studer remains hopeful in the face of the climate crisis and the tumultuous political climate. According to Studer, going fully zero-waste or completely vegan is unrealistic for many people, but focusing on reducing meat consumption and reducing plastic waste can make a big difference.
“I think if everybody started to do those smaller things, which seems like a small thing, but if the masses do it then the impact will be a lot bigger,” said Studer.
“And hopefully it always has to come from the top down as well, where politicians will change regulations, that’s how you get companies to become more innovative, when rules are put in place that are tough,” she added.
Studer strives to create her work in a sustainable way and spread eco-consciousness through her art.
“By doing an exhibition like this I can do my part to maybe, just on a very, very small scale, to increase awareness of what’s going on and feeling like I am making a difference,” said Studer.
Studer’s art can be viewed and bought at artworkarchive.com/profile/anja-studer. Protect What You Love will be exhibited at the Pulse Gallery in the Johnston Terminal until Oct. 31.