London Futures: Art exhibit imagines what may lie ahead
Books like Stephen Baxter’s Flood, Saci Lloyd’s Carbon Diaries 2015 and 2017, Ronald Wright’s A Scientific Romance, and Maggie Gee’s The Flood and Ice Age have depicted a future London either in the violent throws of climate change or after such a radical change has already happened. These books are members of a growing cannon of science or speculative fiction about an often grim future that is difficult for most to conceive of: a vastly altered landscape, a flooded, tropical or frozen London which presents challenges that either crush or ignite the humanity of its inhabitants.
Though most of these books are new, they come from an older tradition in Science Fiction: dystopia. HG Welles’ The Time Machine (1895) would be an early example of the genre and even features weather control or geo engineering. The 1973 film Soylent Green, starring Charlton Heston, depicts an ultra hot New York City in the year 2022 and mentions dying ocean plankton.
For both fans of dystopian fiction and those interested in climate change, the museum of London is running a display called ‘London Futures’ until March 6th featuring photomontages depicting artists’ visions of London after experiencing a profound change in climate.
The display brings home the full impact of global warming, food scarcity, rising sea levels and how all Londoners will need to innovate and adapt to survive.
The London Futures exhibit also features several events including a talk by noted UK environmentalist Sir Crispin Tickell and a competition in cooperation with the Metro newspaper in which anyone is welcome to upload their own image of a future London and win a place in the exhibit plus an Apple iPad.
Check out 15 of the London Futures images in this article from the Telegraph: