Alphabet of the Anthropocene

About the project:

The Alphabet of the Anthropocene is part of the Powerless Powerpoint series created in collaboration with Brett Bloom.  The project focuses on defining terms that are part of life in an anthropogenic epoch. The debated but also widely used term Anthropocene describes a new geological era shaped by human society. Human society has had such a decisive and devastating impact on the global environment that scientists have come up with this term to describe that impact. Andrew Revkin, writes in the New York Times:

“This is the proposed epoch of Earth history that, proponents say, has begun with the rise of the human species as a globally potent bio-geophysical force, capable of leaving a durable imprint in the geological record.”

The term is still up for debate but it is being heavily researched and discussed, evidenced by, for example, the new Anthropocene focused research initiative at Aaarhus University in Aarhus, Denmark.
Bloom and I selected seven letters. Then we designed and screen printed seven slides that describe various impacts human society is having on the environment.  We hope to continue adding to our anthropogenic alphabet in the future, eventually filling out all of the letters in this apocalyptic set of characters. The letters and words/phrases that we produced this time are as follows, with links that help explain each one:

A is for Anthropocene
J is for Jellification
K is for Keep it in the Ground
P is for Plastisphere
S is for Super
Cargo Ships
T is for Trophic Cascade
U is for Uneconomic Growth

Examples of selected slides:

AlphabetAntrho_Fi Supercargoships

The Alphabet of the Anthropocene in action at the ACTS 2014 Performance Art Festival.

Getting ready to take it on the road at the Danish Artist Workshops.



Brett Bloom and Bonnie Fortune as Let’s Remake


ACTS 2014 Performance Festival, Roskilde Museum of Contemporary Art, Roskilde, Denmark


This project is supported by the Danish Arts Council and the Danish Art Workshops, where Let’s Remake had a production residency.


One response to “Alphabet of the Anthropocene”

  1. […] case studies about cultural work dealing with the environment. Other recent projects include ‘The Alphabet of the Anthropocene‘ with Brett Bloom, a large-scale public display system of key words defining life in our […]