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In NYC, 2 days before the U.N. Climate Summit, a giant ice sculpture of the words THE FUTURE will melt away in lower Manhattan.
In NYC, 2 days before the U.N. Climate Summit, a giant ice sculpture of the words THE FUTURE will melt away in lower Manhattan.
98 backers pledged $5,667 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

Dawn of the Anthropocene - Public Art Ice Sculpture project video thumbnail
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When we saw that 350.org was organizing the People’s Climate March during the U.N. Climate Summit, we immediately knew we wanted to help.

In that spirit, we’ve decided to erect a temporary monument in lower Manhattan during the Climate March.

This is our third Kickstarter project.

We're asking you to join us and help make an important art work addressing the impact of global warming and its effects on life on earth.

We’ve been making temporary monuments and inserting them into major political events since 2006. These sculptures galvanize opinion to create a platform around significant issues. They're dynamic monuments that draw the public in and set the stage for involvement.

Our temporary monuments are text-based sculptures carved from solid blocks of ice. They're set up on pedestals and illuminated by light boxes to punctuate important dates and locations.

We film them disappearing.

We melted down Democracy on the third anniversary of the Iraq War and reprised it for the poltical conventions in 2008 in Denver and St. Paul.

We melted down the Economy in lower Manhattan on the 79th anniversary of the Great Depression.

And we melted the Middle Class in Tampa and Charlotte during the conventions in 2012. (Our second Kickstarter project.)

Now we’re melting down The Future in New York City.

Because if the world’s leaders at the Climate Summit don’t take action, there may not be much of one left.

The U.N. Climate Summit is one of the most important events on global warming to date and this is going to be one of the strongest temporary monuments we’ve ever made.

We're coordinating this with 350.org  – they’re as enthusiastic and excited as we are - and we're also involved with other artists and activists planning to participate at the People’s Climate March.

We call our project Dawn of the Anthropocene, which is a term scientists use to call the age we’re living in, when the power of humans is greater than that of nature’s.

This is how we make them:

First we carve it. We’re working with Shintaro Okamoto. This is the fourth ice sculpture we’ve made with him.

We’re privileged to have worked with his father Takeo on earlier ones. He was a master carver cuting the letters from blocks of special ice by hand. An entire word can weigh 2000 or more pounds.

On the day of our event, Shintaro, his assistants and we will install the ice words on location, where we also set up cameras to film the sculptures as they disintegrate.

It can take anywhere from 4 to 24 hours to melt away. We’re constantly documenting the entire process and make the media available on our website meltedaway.com.

Equally important is the location, we’re installing it in Flat Iron North Plaza at the intersection of Broadway and Fifth Avenue on 23 Street. This is a long and complicated process. Some cities require extensive permits, others not. From our experience New York is somewhere in between. We're currently fine tuning the date of the event; it will be either September 21 or 23. (Stay tuned.)

One of the great aspects about this sculpture is its material presence as it transforms from a solid state to liquid. The idea is clear and people on site really connect with it. All of these components (sculpture, location, date of event, media and internet) and the interaction with the public make up a social sculpture.

That's just some of the nuts and bolts.

But we definitely can't realize this project without your support:

  • To help pay for our location permit
  • To fund the video documentation and streaming
  • To pay for finishing the project website
  • To hire assistants on the day of the event
  • And to pay for 4 more letters.

And most importantly, we need to make this project have as big an impact as possible through you. You can be a part of the action by mentioning it on as many blogs, tweets, and social media sites as possible.

Together we can make a public intervention to address global warming.

Before we forget, here are some incentives available as a thank you for your support:

-- Postcard of the sculpture and a desktop image you can download

-- MP3 recording of what the Future disappearing sounds like – location recording of ice letters breaking link below is the 2012 Middle Class ice sculpture in Tampa

-- Dough-Yo's and Po-Yo's - Gold Standards in YoYo's

Dough-Yo
Dough-Yo
Po-Yo
Po-Yo

-- The famous F**K snow globe

-- Over/Sight, our newest limited edition lenticular 2014 (ed. 100),

-- And for the ultimate sponsorship, if you back an ice letter, we'll send you a signed and numbered digital print of the sculpture on location from the event.

Risks and challenges

Melting down the Future is a cool idea, but it's really a serious issue - and presents many challenges.

Conceptually, it's really hard - what does it mean to meltdown the future? That's pretty heavy.

Besides that, we still face potential glitches - our permit is in the approval stages, will it be granted?

How smoothly will the set up go? Will the streaming work? What if it goes down during the event?

But most of all, one of the biggest lessons and one of the biggest surprises - is just how private public space actually is.

Did you know that the Flat Iron building licenses its image? What happens when it's in a background? We're working on that. Stay tuned.

But the biggest challenge of all is - how can we make this be a successful art work and still carry a strong political and social message. That's why we need your help.

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Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $2 or more About $2.00

    Join the team and be a Supporter: Back Dawn of the Anthropocene at any level you'll get behind-the-scenes updates on the project as it develops.

    Share it with the world by tweeting, blogging about, emailing your friends about it.

    In exchange for helping us to make this project happen we will list your name as a supporter on our website http://meltedaway.com

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    This is what the Future disappearing sounds like. For your pledge of $10 or more, we'll send you a link to download a MP3 of The Future Ice Sculpture cracking and disappearing. Your name will appear as a supporter on our website http://meltedaway.com

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Signed, Dawn of the Anthropocene postcard. We'll also include a hi-res digital image you can use for your computer desktop.

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    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    Event Poster - 2 sided, 18 x 24 inch color offset broadside. We're really excited to offer this inspiring poster from Dawn of the Anthropocene, which we're producing to give away during the meltdown. One side is an image of water with an incredible statement from writer Rebecca Solnit and the other an image of ice with a quotation from Rachel Carson, one of the founders of the environmental movement.

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Pureproductsusa yo-yo's - the gold standard in yo-yo's! Another fantastic pure product from our limited edition series.

    Choose either a Dough-yo or Po-yo, our yo-yo's designed during the financial crisis in 2008.

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Dawn of the Anthropocene first class postage stamps commemorating the installation and sculpture. Photographic image of the site. Sheet of five.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Return of the F**K Snow Globe - One of our greatest hits. Best-seller at the New Museum, Museum of Sex and other select shops.

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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    Blu-ray DVD of timelapse videos of Democracy, Economy and Middle Class ice sculptures. Featured in the exhibition ICED at Jim Kempner Fine Art in NYC.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Signed and Numbered digital Ice print of the letter F disappearing installation measuring 8 x 10 inches. Edition of 20

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    Pledge $850 or more About $850

    Our latest limited edition piece, Over/Sight. Digital lenticular print mounted on Sintra, cradle frame on back, 15 x 15 inches
    signed and numbered edition of 100. Ready to hang. Featured at Maison24, the New Museum store and Artware Editions.

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    Pledge $1,150 or more About $1,150

    The ultimate incentive - become an ice letter sponsor! Pledge support for an ice letter of the sculpture. In return for your sponsorship you will get a digital print and/or DVD and be listed on all publicity related to the piece.

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Funding period

- (40 days)