chapter  8
18 Pages

Mobilizing Artists: Green Patriot Posters, Visual Metaphors, and Climate Change Activism

WithBrian Cozen

This essay examines the Canary Project’s Green Patriot Posters campaign as activist art

that collectively comments on the cultural coherence of our current relations to the

environment, particularly in terms of global warming, sustainability, and the concept of

linear economic growth. Aspiring to bring together artists under the eco-activist

umbrella, the Canary Project relies on an old WWII-inspired frame with a narrow

premise of that period’s conservation efforts. Within this framework, a range of visual

designs question, subvert, and promote continued economic growth and an ontology that

‘‘more’’ equals ‘‘better.’’ An analysis of the updown orientational metaphors underscores a typology of these valuations and reveals one way to assess implications of such

artistic efforts. That is, artistic expressions adapt and play with the contingent nature of

metaphors, offering elaborations, extensions, and alternatives on basic structural

elements and, hence, remark on how we orient ourselves and productively imagine

being of/in the world anew.