The United States of America’s National parks are changing due to the effects of climate change. Glaciers are melting, wildfires are becoming more prominent and more devastating and whitebark pines and other tree species are under attack by pests, that’s just to name a few. What will our treasured parks look like by 2050 if we do nothing to address climate change?
That’s the question that motivated an art project by Hannah Rothstein. Rothstein reworked historical national park posters to show what our beloved landscapes will look like if climate change continues. Highlights include dead redwood trees, algae blooms, dying mangroves and starving grizzly bears.
Rothstein adapted well-known historical posters that were commissioned by the Works Projects Administration in the 1930s. The WPA was part of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal and it put millions of unemployed Americans to work. Among them were artists who were charged with creating posters to lure visitors to the national parks.
Although an estimated 1,400 of these posters were printed, only 41 are accounted for today.
Rothstein reimagined seven of the posters to highlight how the national parks would look in 2050. Where park highlights like hiking and sights were once listed on the posters you can now see effects of climate change on each park.
Rothstein is selling the posters on her website with 25 percent of the proceeds going to climate-related causes.