Buffalo, New York
New York environmental artist Chantal Calato has received a $10,000 grant from the Global Warming Art Project to fund UNSEEN, a multimedia installation which will open at the Burchfield Penney Art Center in March of 2020. The grant is supported from donations from Ben Perrone and the ‘Environment Maze’ project donors and administered by Arts Services Initiative of Western New York. Calato was the first artist to receive the new grant in 2018.
UNSEEN is a multi-media art installation that examines the mutilation of our environment, and in turn ourselves. Now more than 40 years after the neighborhood surrounding Love Canal was destroyed by toxic waste, artist Chantal Calato investigates how the people of the Niagara region continue to suffer from the chemicals of Niagara’s industrial legacy. Calato interviewed 18 people for UNSEEN all from Niagara county. These people’s dark personal stories are at the heart of UNSEEN creating a soundscape of voices revealing how they have been affected by these toxins inside their homes. The UNSEEN voices will fill the room, describing in detail what they see and smell, and share the physical and emotional burden that is their environment. Illuminating the space at the Burchfield Penney will be a double height projection of Calato’s cinematography of the cascading brink of Niagara Falls.
“With UNSEEN, I wanted to contrast the beauty the world knows Niagara Falls for with the dark personal stories of those who have lived in the shadows of this city,” said Calato. “UNSEEN is about your home. It is about your children, your pets, and your neighborhood. This project is about you.”