Christina Conklin

California, US

Instagram:

From the Collage Collage series

Analog collage

In my continuing Collapse Collage series, this one turned into a prayer for awakening. Knowing the dangers we face makes my hope even more active and fervent. Made from an issue of National Geographic (May 1992).
2021
  • Christina Conklin

Collapse Collage series

Collage

Each work in this series of Collapse Collages is created from one old National Geographic, in an attempt to understand where we are now by looking at how we understood ourselves then. The dissonance can be loud. Though I grew up in a liberal-minded home in the 70s and 80s, and my mom in particular was of a “waste not, want not” Midwestern heritage, there was not much awareness growing up about where our “belongings” or privilege came from or at whose expense. We were charitable and concerned about suffering locally and around the world, but it felt distant. I even grew up in the Unitarian Universalist Church, which affirms “the interdependent web of existence, of which we are a part” — but I never learned about systems thinking in school or felt any movement in the culture at large toward depth, meaning, or connection. Instead, Reaganomics grabbed us all by the throat and became the dominant belief system of my lifetime. This legacy of human and white supremacy, going back 500+ years, is the foundation of modern belief systems, and it has brought us to the brink of global collapse. Telling new stories is our only war through this mess.
2021
  • Christina Conklin

Collapse Collage series

Collage

Another collapse collage, this on the theme of Economic and Political Systems, part of the June art call by @whatsnextforearth, based on the excellent Think Resilience course of @postcarboninstitute.

Taking a single issue of a National Geographic from my youth (70s/80s), I look for images that relate to this monthly theme to see how it echoes down the years.

These aren’t works of great subtlety; mostly, they reflect my own shock (but not surprise) at the storylines we were fed for decades. I’ve been wondering why my generation has been so asleep at the wheel (not to mention the Boomers!), and it has everything to do with this relentless chorus of conquest and consumption.

As artists, we need to write new stories, create visions of what can be, why we should care, and how to get from here to there. We don’t need to live in a broken world system. We all create culture every day.
2021
  • Christina Conklin

Collapse Collage series

Collage

This funny little climate collage is me thinking about Pollution, especially in the ocean, where carbon dioxide and methane from fossil fuels and radiation from nuclear meltdowns weave with the waters and life forms into a complex soup of being.

The images, from 1970s National Geographic magazines, are: an ad touting how nuclear energy can help us “defuse” the next oil crisis; a diver surrounded by a halo of fish; a drawing of an enormous sea creature, now long extinct.

How do we relate to the ocean? Where does our waste go? Why is the heat on in my house right now, even though I’m not cold? These are the questions we must be asking ourselves and each other every day.
2021
  • Christina Conklin

Collapse Collage series

Collage

In the 1950s, there were 2 billion on earth, now there are 7+, heading toward 10. What does it mean for justice, resources, and global culture when too many bodies share a warming planet?
2021
  • Christina Conklin

Crossroads – Collapse Collage series

collage
24” x 18”

Climate, race, resource extraction, and ecological systems form a complex web of energy production and consumption that poses existential risks to much of life on earth. 80% of multi-celled creatures on earth are nematodes, tiny soil worms that create healthy soil, while impoverished men in Madagascar dig soil out by hand looking for sapphires and Peruvian women sort asparagus for export. We stand at a crossroads, the same one hundreds of slaves stood on in Alabama for the largest auction of humans in US history. Will we learn to see energy systems clearly and use them wisely for the benefit of all beings, or will we continue to divide, chop, exploit, exterminate, and pollute? The revolution will not be televised.
2021
  • Christina Conklin

Tideline as Timeline: San Mateo

cloth, paper
50” x 20”

This is the artifact of a walk in the Tideline as Timeline series, in which I led people along the future shoreline (in red) of their neighborhood — this walk-in San Mateo.
The light blue “waves” denote the current shoreline we crossed Hwy 101, which will be underwater before too long, b cause much of this area was built on infilled salt flats.
Each slip of paper records a conversation between pairs of walkers in response to prompts on their relationship to place, their role in the story, and their responses to a climate disrupted future.
2021
  • Christina Conklin

Global coral stress

Plastic, ink

November 5, 2018
2020
  • Christina Conklin

Small Salt Map

Salt, paper

This is from a series of small salt maps, though this feels like more of a portrait. I’m using salt and slide dyes, rust, and other chemical agents to investigate the unpredictable and impermanent nature of the world we’re co-creating.
2020
  • Christina Conklin

Articles from the MAHB

Want to hear from us occasionally? Subscribe to our newsletter