Tag Archives: uranium

Radioactive Coming to Live [Make-up Event #2]

Written by: Benjamin Tan

We all are unable to see the radioactive energy with our own naked eyes but what this artist did in their portraits was to use uranium and radioactive charcoal to paint a picture that can depict the drastic consequence of us human beings that have created such a huge impact towards nuclear energy.

Lilah Leopold the curator gave lots of context for the artwork even in terms of how the Krannert Art Museum is set up especially for this kind of artwork. Among all the many radioactive artworks, Lilah focused on these 2 artworks.

Lilah Leopold the curator giving context and explaining these 2 artworks

Both artworks are made up of synthetic uranium and radioactive charcoal. It depicted the amount of uranium that has been mined and for the left portrait, the land does not exist anymore due to the massive mining.

What intrigue me was the many vertical and horizontal lines on both artworks. It depicted graphs of uranium that been mined.

Artwork made up of synthetic uranium and radioactive charcoal. Timeline of a billion years

The one on the left was a graph of a billion years! From the graph, it can be inferred how the resource of uranium is depicting rapidly and the amount of radioactivity has been dispersed in the air.

Lines referred to the steepness of the rocks

For the right artwork, the lines refer to about 100 years of the uranium resource. Apart from that, it also was to show the longitude and latitude of the land. As shown, the steeper lines refer to the taller and steeper rocks.

Lilah also shared how the radioactive waste will take approximately 5 million years before it becomes jewelry and she put a thought in all of us asking how we can take personal responsibility towards radioactive waste.

It got me thinking, what are some actions can I take to contribute to the conversation of this radioactive waste.

Overall, I enjoyed the art talk! Looking forward to the next one!

Radioactive Materials & Art [makeup event]

Written by: Laura Chong

Wow! When art meets science, it really opens up your mind to social issues in a way that you have never imagined.

Artwork painted using synthetic uranium underneath charcoal

This particular art talk on radioactivity and the landscape made me realize the severity of radioactive materials on our landscape.

Before attending this art talk, I was unaware of the issues of radioactivity. The picture above shows a landscape that is lost. This makes me sad because such beautiful landscape should never have been destroyed.

Another artwork that shows the landscape of New Mexico

This other artwork shows the landscape of New Mexico. With a yellowish green hue, the landscape looks polluted. This feels like the artist is trying to portray what uranium dumping is doing to our earth.

The most interesting part of the artworks are the difference between the graphs. The first artwork shows a graph that spans over a million years, while the second artwork shows a graph that spans over a hundred years. The graph represents how the radioactive materials are losing mass and how the subatomic particles are trying to find a stable state to make it no longer radioactive.

I like how the artists incorporated graphs into the artworks because it gives more “weight” to the severity of the issue being discussed. It makes us think and feel more about the social issue.

The art talk ended with a discussion on the Open Care Project, where we think about “what if everyone has their own radioactive waste storage? what if radioactive waste becomes a personal responsibility?” The radioactive waste could become a jewelry, that can only become wearable after 5 million years. It is certainly a very interesting thought, and I imagine a totally different world. A world where there are no uranium dumps and a cleaner world for us to live in. A utopia.

Overall, this art talk was really meaningful and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It introduced me to how art can assist in communicating social issues and let the audience ponder about major issues that we were previously unaware of.

Radioactive Art (Make-Up Event #2)

Written by Ashleigh Cox

A wall of photos in the exhibit!

Krannert Art Museum’s second ArtTalk discussed the way we get rid of nuclear waste. The curator, Lilah Leopold, focused on a few different pieces and explained the intention of the exhibit from the artists’ point of view.

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