Environmental artists show where sea level rise meets the road

Underwater HOA project part of this year's Art Basel

PINECREST, Fla. – Everyone jokes that Miami could soon be underwater, but a new art installation in southwest Miami-Dade County is making the seemingly abstract problem more concrete, showing how all that extra water would affect South Florida's roads.

To help raise awareness about sea level rise, environmental artist Xavier Cortada is painting 25-foot by 25-foot Underwater Markers in spots around the village of Pinecrest. The markers depict where sea level will rise directly onto the roadways.

"By  mapping  the  impending  crisis,  I  make  the  invisible  visible.  Block  by  block,  house  by  house,  neighbor  by  neighbor,  I  want  to  make  the  future  impact  of  sea  level  rise  something  impossible  to  ignore," Cortada said.

Cortada, who was recently one of 12 artists featured in a New York Times story about climate change, is working with high school students to help get the markers done while teaching them about the danger of rising sea levels. Titled Underwater HOA, the art project will be part of this year's Art Basel.

The Underwater Markers show how many feet of melting glacial waters need to rise before the area is underwater.

The paintings are bright blue and hard for the Miami residents who drive past the intersections to miss. The goal to the paintings is to try and bring citizens together to become quicker problem-solvers.

"I  want  residents  across  Miami-Dade  County  to  understand  this  is  not  a  political partisan  issue.  This  is  a  community  issue,” Cortada said.  “Underwater  HOA  and  sea-level  rise  is  relevant  to  everyone."


About the Author:

Annabelle Caceres is a valued intern at Local 10 News.