Ana Zibelnik

Ana Zibelnik, Fault Line serie, 2023.

How do you capture the climate crisis in images? This seems like a simple question as there are plenty of examples around: photos of wild fires or floods, migrants whose living environment has become uninhabitable, or protesters demanding immediate action from administrators and politicians. Together with Jakob Ganslmeier, Ana Zibelnik (1995) creates a different type of image: “General overviews, for instance of polar bears on melting ice caps, are important as they highlight the far-reaching consequences of the climate crisis. But photographs like that can sometimes also give the impression the catastrophe is taking place elsewhere,” Zibelnik explains. Its destructive effects are of course also visible closer to home, just think of the floods and wild fires sweeping large parts of Europe last summer.

With their project Fault Line (2023), Zibelnik and Ganslmeier draw attention to how the social consequences of the climate crisis are affecting individuals all over the world and lead to, for instance, climate anxiety or even depression. The two photographers travel across Europe to capture the impact climate-related problems have on the lives of individuals. These people are asked to sit down while Zibelnik and Ganslmeier interview them about their thoughts and feelings concerning this, by now inescapable, crisis. As a result, the sitters have the climate crisis on their mind at the exact moment the photograph is taken. “It’s something they are permanently dealing with,” Zibelnik adds. At Prospects, these portraits are alternated with images of other climate damage. The artists thus succeed in presenting a layered picture of this all-encompassing catastrophe.

Text: Jorne Vriens
Translation from Dutch to English: Marie Louise Schoondergang