Raindrop Price Index: You Cannot Refill A Sea With Tears
“Raindrop Price Index” features two generative animations based on measurements of terrestrial-ecosystems’-water balance cycles.
The artist challenges the idea of capturing ecosystem value through big data and natural capital accounting, instead interpreting the economic model of supply and demand from the viewpoint of ecosystems as major consumers of rain. Monthly fluctuations in worldwide precipitation and rainfall demand, expressed through evapotranspiration data, are used to generate audio and visuals that resemble early meteorology and commodity price charts.
The artwork uses the Climate Engine’s 2011–2021 TerraClimate dataset, processed by Google Earth and obtained from NOAA and NASA by the University of Idaho’s researchers, with natural capital accounting knowledge tools used to question anthropocentric views of phenomena beyond human reach. The title pays homage to the Aral Sea tragedy and prompts us to reflect on the interplay between nature, society, and economic systems.