I find it fascinating that once Oprah declared environmentalism suitable for the masses the way she did with literacy, it suddenly became cool to talk about your carbon footprint and recycling programs over dinner. It's really too bad Oprah didn't clear her couch of polygamists and diet gurus 20 years ago to decree that green is good, 'cause we've wasted a lot of time. Tracy Hicks and Billy Hassell have made it their life's work to show us that, to plead with us to fix what we can while we still can. They don't have a sanctimonious talk show as their platform, but they are artists, and they definitely have a way of making themselves heard. Hicks' pieces, shown together as Global Warming: still/LIFE, are rubber casts of extinct frogs juxtaposed with the everyday objects we associate with environmental toxicity or human encroachment on nature. Hassell's exhibit, Field Notes, are indeed his field notes from Audubon Society observations on endangered birds and their habitats, together with lithographs and drawings of his subjects. Together, the exhibits make a striking statement about the fragility of our ecosystem and the need for society to embrace environmentalism as more than a trend. The exhibits can be seen at the MAC, 3120 McKinney Ave., between Friday and June 21. Visit the-mac.org for more details.
Tuesdays-Sundays. Starts: May 9. Continues through June 21, 2008