About the Book


Ute Meta Bauer

Ute Meta Bauer is Founding Director of NTU Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore and Professor in the School of Art, Design, and Media at Nanyang Technological University Singapore. Previously, she was Associate Professor and Founding Director of the MIT Program in Art, Culture, and Technology (ACT) in the MIT School of Architecture and Planning (SA+P).

Climates. Habitats. Environments.

Edited by Ute Meta Bauer


Artists and writers go beyond disciplinary boundaries and linear histories to address the fight for environmental justice, uniting the Asia-Pacific vantage point with international discourse.

Modeling the curatorial as a method for uniting cultural production and science, Climates. Habitats. Environments. weaves together image and text to address the global climate crisis. Through exhibitions, artworks, and essays, artists and writers transcend disciplinary boundaries and linear histories to bring their knowledge and experience to bear on the fight for environmental justice. In doing so, they draw on the rich cultural heritage of the Asia-Pacific, in conversation with international discourse, to demonstrate transdisciplinary solution-seeking.

Experimental in form as well as in method, Climates. Habitats. Environments. features an inventive book design by mono.studio that puts word and image on equal footing, offering a multiplicity of media, interpretations, and manifestations of interdisciplinary research. For example, botanist Matthew Hall draws on Ovid’s Metamorphoses to discuss human-plant interpenetration; curator and writer Venus Lau considers how spectrality consumes—and is consumed—in animation and film, literature, music, and cuisine; and critical theorist and filmmaker Elizabeth Povinelli proposes “Water Sense” as a geontological approach to “the question of our connected and differentiated existence,” informed by the “ancestral catastrophe of colonialism.” Artists excavate the natural and cultural DNA of indigo, lacquer, rattan, and mulberry; works at the intersection of art, design, and architecture explore “The Posthuman City”; an ongoing research project investigates the ecological urgencies of Pacific archipelagos. The works of art, the projects, and the majority of the texts featured in the book were commissioned by NTU Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore.

Copublished with NTU Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore

Featured writers

Ravi Agarwal, Nabil Ahmed, Cynthia Chou, Michael MJ Fischer, Édouard Glissant, Donna Haraway, Matthew Hall, Epeli Hau’ofa, May Adadol Ingawanij, Venus Lau, Michael Marder, Nina Oeghoede and Philippe Pirotte, Nikos Papastergiadis and David Pledger, Elizabeth Povinelli, Marian Pastor Roces and Tan Zi Hao

With short texts by

Alfian Sa’at, Jake Atienza, Sean Connelly, Kenneth Dean, Faizah Binte Zakaria, Huang Jui-Mao, Anna Källén, Susanne Kriemann, Philippa Lovatt, Rob Nixon, Tania Roy, Matariki Williams, and others

Featured artists include

Irwan Ahmett and Tita Salina, Martha Atienza, Tarek Atoui, Tanatchai Bandasak, Rossella Biscotti, Sean Connelly, Choy Ka Fai, Lucy Davis, Ade Darmawan, Ines Doujak, Jef Geys, Ho Tzu Nyen, Susanne Kriemann, Nicholas Mangan, Alice Miceli, Zarina Muhammad, Manish Nai, Nguyen Trinh Thi; Park Chan-kyong; Sopheap Pich, Marjectica Potrč; Bridget Reweti, Melati Suryodarmo, Sung Tieu, Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Wu Mali, Robert Zhao Renhui

Ravi Agarwal