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Thinning Ice Installation Images © Steve Benisty
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Design

Thinning Ice: Swarovski and Architect Jeanne Gang Tackle Climate Change

By Claire Breukel

December 3, 2014

American architect and MacArthur fellow Jeanne Gang has been commissioned by the luxury fashion accessories company Swarovski to create “Thinning Ice,” an immersive and interactive environment at this year’s Design Miami/ fair. Using Swarovski crystals as her chief medium, Gang’s installation aims to illuminate the decrease in arctic ice density by creating the illusion that the crystals––stand-ins for glacial ice––are cracking and melting. This immersive environment is accentuated by a series of time-lapse images of the changing Jökulsárlón glacial lake in Iceland by filmmaker and nature photographer James Balog. Visitors have the opportunity to interact with the imagery by zooming in on details of the monumental ice formations and the wildlife that inhabits them.

The Swarovski commission continues the brand’s collaboration with Balog, who is also photographing the diminishing Stubai glacier in Austria as part of his larger project “Extreme Ice Survey.” As Swarovski’s ninth Design Miami/ commission winner, Gang’s collaboration with the company and integration of Balog’s documentation aims to activate a sense of urgency about the changing environment by tackling the important and pressing global issue of climate change. “This inspiring and captivating installation is as educational as it is stunning,” confirms Nadja Swarovski, who expresses a company-wide commitment toward water conservation and environmental preservation.

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Thinning Ice Installation Images © Steve Benisty

This article was previously published in Whitewaller.

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