Public Domain: Rescue and Relief
By Anna Lentchner
The impacts of climate change are making natural disasters stronger and more prevalent. In New Zealand, the Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki was forced to evacuate 80 crates containing nearly 500 artworks after heavy rain flooded its basement in late January. The untimely incident came ahead of a multimillion-dollar repair for its leaking roof. On February 6, the region of southeastern Turkey and northwestern Syria was rocked by successive earthquakes with magnitudes of 7.8 and 7.5, killing an estimated 45,000 people. Regional institutions contributed to relief efforts: the Sharjah Art Foundation donated monthly proceeds from its Rain Room pavilion; Dubai’s Alserkal Avenue and the Emirates Red Crescent planned a fundraiser; Art Dubai pledged 50 percent of revenue from its 2023 fair’s online ticket sales; and Beirut nonprofit Ashkal Alwan contributed to a family-support campaign. In New York, the e-flux Screening Room held a benefit screening of Pelin Tan’s and Anton Vidokle’s film set in the region, Gilgamesh: She Who Saw the Deep (2022).