While Southern Californians enjoy the sunny autumn weather this holiday season, we all remember last year’s fluctuating temperatures from warm beach-worthy highs to the stormy lows and frost’s infamous bite. So, it’s only appropriate that the Riverside Art Museum showcase “Edenistic Divergence,” an exhibition surrounding the idea of Eden—the perfect landscape—as juxtaposed to the reality of rapid climate change. Throughout the exhibit, four artists create renderings of what these issues mean and their effects on our surroundings and lives in the past, present and future. Rebecca Niederlander’s wired cloud installation hovering over the exhibit acts as a reminder that the consequences of our actions do not only affect our landscape but our lives as well, while Lisa Adams’ realistic portraits of birds and small animals in fantasy landscapes offer a view into the future playing on the theme of “life after man.” And Kimber Berry and Hollis Cooper illustrate movement through color; Berry depicting water as the magic elixir that gave us life and how we’ve intoxicated the element, while Cooper examines plant life through a futuristic vine, both life-like and mechanical. Landscapes have artistically played supporting roles, but in “Edenistic Divergence” landscapes are the center of attention and as concerns widen about our literal landscape, it is only fitting that artists re-examine a subject they have placed, as we have placed, in the background for so long.
“Edenistic Divergence” at the Riverside Art Museum, 3425 Mission Inn Ave., Riverside, (951) 684-7111; www.riversideartmuseum.org. Thru Feb. 20, Mon-Sat, 10AM-4PM. $5 general admission.