GILLIE AND MARC – Pledge to become Carbon Neutral
The world has made an agreement, one that will save our planet. The Paris Agreement was a remarkable moment in world history when leaders of the world promised to reduce and eventually stop emitting greenhouse gases, a promise which will ensure we halt our current path in raising the global temperature by 2°C, and hopefully, by 1.5°C.
While this may sound like a very small temperature rise, it would be detrimental to life as we know it. We are already seeing the effects today. With ice melting in the Arctic, sea levels rising, and unprecedented instability of weather patterns affecting our crops and livelihoods, the need to work towards carbon neutral alternatives has never been more urgent.
As environmental activists, we want to do all we can to join in this mission for carbon neutrality and do everything in our power to save our planet. Already, we have many measures put in place to reduce our footprint and we our gallery in Sydney is now proudly carbon neutral.
Whenever we can, we use recycled materials for our artworks. Our favourite medium to use for sculptures is bronze. This is a fantastic substance that can easily be reused, recycled, and repurposed. A lot of the copper (bronze is made of copper and tin) we use in our sculptures is recycled. We melt down old bronze sculptures and other copper products to breathe new life into them. By recycling, we are taking off any strain on the environment from over extracting while at the same time, reducing any waste.
We also prefer to make all of our moulds by hand. By doing this, we have high levels of labour rather than production. Eliminating the machinery means we are also eliminating polluting emissions that would come from fueling them.
As greenies we have always loved being in nature, growing up climbing trees and thriving whenever we walk through the woods. We watched in great sadness as the forests around us shrunk, but we were not left dispirited. We realised that this was a very real way we could give back to our forests and create new green spaces for everyone to enjoy.
As an art practice, we have developed a program to plant trees whenever we sell an artwork. Not only does this reforest the world, but it’s also a great way for us to offset our carbon emissions while we work towards the smallest footprint we can make.
Shipping, not flying
A huge culprit for emissions is air travel. An aeroplane emits 20-30x the emissions of a boat, a huge difference! Currently, ships are the most sustainable form of transport. We create art that is sent all over the world, whether it’s a painting to an individual or a monumental public sculpture. No matter what the size, we always choose to freight our art via ship rather than plane. This may take longer but it’s worth it to reduce our footprint.
Art for the people
Our art has always been for the people. Whether it’s a sculpture hidden in a garden, a mural on a restaurant's wall, or a painting hanging in someone’s living room, we make art to be lived with. This means that it’s not created to be kept away in a temperature-controlled room with special lighting to preserve it. Art like this is not only very exclusive and elitist, but it also requires a lot of emissions to keep the environment just right. Not only is this bad for the environment but we believe it takes out the joy of art.
Going carbon neutral in the gallery
Looking close to home is a very good place to start a carbon neutral journey. Our gallery in Sydney is one area we have worked towards reducing our emissions. We have installed double glazing and insulation to reduce any heating or cooling costs and we are also looking into ways in which we can move towards renewable energies. Our gallery in Sydney is now proudly carbon neutral.