Leslie Sobel

By June 23, 2021Featured Artists

My work focuses on climate and water. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, I would have said climate change is the existential issue of our time. Today I would recast that more broadly—climate change, environmental damage, pollution, profligate overuse of resources, as well as viral outbreaks, are all related to issues of poor human stewardship of our interconnected planet. The connection between environmental issues, environmental justice and the pandemic’s disproportionate effects on the poor and people of color is undeniable. As an artist, I bear witness to what we are losing and imagine ways to mitigate the losses creatively, lovingly and honestly.

This past year has made me heighten my focus on the interrelationships between ecosystems, climate and human action. I believe we have the chance to form a more resilient relationship with the natural world based in care and mutualism. I focus on those interrelationships, where they are damaged and where we may mend them. Water is the connection for me in all this – the essential focal point we all require to live and grow. Clean healthy water is a human right and bodies of water are entities that are entitled to be cared for as much as we should care for each other. As an artist I explore those relationships and try to make the challenges engendered by pollution, climate change and poor human stewardship visible and emotionally accessible.