Living with CO2

Living with CO2 brings carbon dioxide into the familiar through revisiting known objects, such as a sundial and a scale, designed to interpret the external world.

Due to human activities carbon dioxide levels are rising, causing the Earth to become warmer. New scientific discoveries provide knowledge which challenges past insights on the topic. This rapidly developing science can be seen as uncertain, which limits the understanding of the individual and therefore their ability to act. At its current measured levels, carbon dioxide has no smell, no tangibility, and no colour. However, it has an impact that can clearly be observed.

This project materialises the gap between the unseen and the tangible by using one of the byproducts of photosynthesis, wood, as a medium. Photosynthesis intake of carbon dioxide varies with the seasons, affected by the Sun's rays. By relating seasonal actions to the carbon cycle, changes become relatable and doubt can be embraced. In time, this can formulate new ways to comprehend and experience the science of carbon dioxide.

The project is based at Stave Hill Ecological Park in London.

Seasons —
  1. Autumn
  2. Winter
  3. Spring
  4. Summer

Objects — 
  1. Carbon Scale 
  2. Wood Wishes
  3. Silvered Coal 
  4. Sun Logs

Project by Rebecca Lardeur

3. Spring 

Silvered Charcoal
Made from Binchotan Charcoal and silver plated; stand made out of Oak and London Plane

Spring starts and the sun stays out longer. Its warmth is felt. Carbon dioxide levels have been rising still the previous Autumn, and it is only in May in which the levels will reduce due to photosynthesis byproducts. 
    For this new growth, Living with CO2 proposes an amulet to carry: a piece of charcoal silver plated. 

Charcoal is another state of trees. It is traditionally used to heat homes or draw. As charcoal is mostly pure carbon, it is an easy way to relate to the element and to silver plate is to do ‘carbon capture’ in a symbolic way. It is also a cheaper option than diamonds, another jewelery composed mostly of pure carbon.