Adam Chodzko – Rising

September 2013

Newcastle, UK

‘Rising’ is an extraordinary, waterlogged, dreamlike future for the Great North Run, where runners have adapted physically and psychologically to their increasingly aquatic environment of flash flooding and rising water levels brought about through climate change.

As part of the British Science Festival 2013, Chodzko produced this audio work for fatigued athletes and their supporters to listen to directly after the race whilst on their way back home on Sunday 15th September. The first live performance of ‘Rising’ by actress Gretchen Egolf with sound by Tim Barker took place on 7th September 2013 in the Tyneside Cinema, Newcastle.

The famous sight of runners passing across the Tyne Bridge out of Newcastle, has become for Chodzko a ritualistic preparation for a city’s evacuation prior to its final submergence under flood waters. This becomes an annual exercise in escape showing the Great North Run’s ongoing ability to evolve, actually incorporating the challenge of flooding into the event. The work operates in a hypnotic way to address the reality and consequences of climate change.

‘Rising’ connects to the flash flooding in June 2012 in Newcastle. The Tyne Bridge was hit by lightning and a month’s rain fell in one hour causing widespread chaos and flooding across the city. This freak weather event was named the ‘Toon Monsoon’.

For ‘Rising’ Chodzko worked in collaboration with Dr Claire Walsh; Researcher in Water Resources, School of Civil Engineering and Geosciences at Newcastle University and Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research. 

‘Rising’ was the first part of the research for ‘Invisible Heat’, an Invisible Dust programme about the effects of climate change on health, supported by the Wellcome Trust. ‘Rising’ was also shown as part of ‘Ways of Seeing’.

‘Rising’ was supported by the Great North Run Culture, the Wellcome Trust, Arts Council England, Newcastle University, basicFM, CIRCA projects, The British Science Festival 2013, The Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

Image: © Adam Chodzko, ‘Rising’, photos Colin Davison, September 2013.


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