Dr. James E. Hansen is a true modern hero. I did a painting called Warmth a few years ago which incorporated some of his climate temperature charts from a lecture he did about global warming. He is an amazing scientist and tireless advocate and I am grateful he is now taking the challenge to a new level, still doing science but focusing on communication with the public.
This ended up being a kind of past, present, future sort of piece. The 17th century Italian chandelier obviously a relic of a past time when this particular thing was made to last, took skill, and provided the function of light in a church (rare and may or may not have been enjoyed by the maker). The present would be represented by the holiday or Christmas string of lights. In contrast it is mass produced product of a consumer society. Not made to last very long, it does provide some light, readily available and usually suggests a festive or spiritual ‘warmth’. The background is from Dr. Hansen’s temperature charts of land masses colored according to obvious temperature changes….suggesting warmth in the future that will be available everywhere and could continue to actually produce more of itself.
Dr. Hansen himself in response to the above article and then some. http://www.columbia.edu/~jeh1/mailings/2013/20130415_Exaggerations.pdf