Miami’s Rising Sea Levels
Over the past century, the global sea level has been rising at a rate of one eighth of an inch per year. Both the US East Coast and the Gulf of Mexico experience the fastest rates of sea level changes. Today, 6 million people live in South Florida with a continuously growing population. In fact studies have shown that Florida has more residents at risk of climate change than any other US state. As a result, local businesses, the country government and real estate companies have started to shift the way they view climate change and adopt methods to actively protect themselves against surge flooding. Climate change continues to be a contested issue within the US government where its hazardous effects are often diminished.
SONIC DREAMSCAPES is a large-scale sound and video art installation piece meant to offer the public a space to reflect on and ponder the implications of climate change and rising sea levels in Miami Beach. We often take advantage of the physical and symbolic importance of our land, sea and air. This installation is one that gives Miami Beach a loud and clear voice to activate a sense of awareness and concern within the public over the fundamental implications of global warming today.
Listening to the Mockingbirds
An integral part of the Sonic Dreamscape installation is the daytime sound piece that sings with multiple layers of moving pieces of Florida national bird; The Northern Mockingbird. This bird holds symbolic significance not only for this nature-inspired installation piece, but also for its spiritual connection to Bill Fontana’s work as a sound artist who, throughout his career, has created music through listening. Northern mockingbird songs are unique from the world’s other 5,600 songbirds’ in that they consist of brief imitated phrases strung together and sung repeatedly. A long standing tenant of Fontana’s work as a sound artist has been perceiving and understanding the world around him through discovering patterns and relationships in ambient sounds, much like the Northern Mockingbird does.