Past Event

The Deluge: On the human costs of rising sea levels

April 20, 2021 - June 30, 2021
8:00 AM - 8:00 PM
The Forum, 601 West 125th Street New York, NY 10027

The Forum and the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism are pleased to present The Deluge: On the human costs of rising sea levels, an exhibit of photographs by photojournalist and Global Visiting Fellow, Kadir van Lohuizen / NOOR. The installation, which debuts at The Forum on Tuesday, April 20, just ahead of Earth Day, will feature photographs illustrating the consequences of climate change in communities across the globe.

The images, on display in New York City for the first time, will be on view in the windows of The Forum’s ground-floor Atrium through this June. While The Forum building itself is currently closed due to the pandemic, this view-from-the-street display allows for a safe, outdoor viewing experience for all.

The Forum installation coincides with an exhibit of van Lohuizen’s work, also opening on April 20, at the Museum of the City of New York. Rising Tide: Visualizing the Human Costs of the Climate Crisis, features photographs, video, drone images, and sound captured by van Lohuizen. Visitors to the exhibit will experience the effects of rising sea levels in Greenland, Bangladesh, Papua New Guinea, Kiribati, Fiji, Amsterdam, Panama, Miami, and our own neighborhoods here in New York City.

About The Deluge

The people of Kiribati, population 115,000, are looking to move, now. Their Pacific island is disappearing. The city of Jakarta, population over 20 million, is sinking even faster than the sea is rising. In Bangladesh, an estimated 6.5 million have been displaced by vast flooding, salinization of farmland and erosion in the Ganges delta. Miami is facing rising sea levels at a rate three times the global average; built on sponge-like limestone, the coastal city may not survive past 2060. Even the Netherlands, where the Dutch have pioneered water management know-how, is far from safe.

Glaciers all over the world are retreating. The ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctica are  melting at an alarming rate. Sea water expands as the earth warms. The sea levels rise and the tides reach further inland, clearing its tidal path.  Coastal erosion, inundation, loss of fresh drinking water resources, and frequent  coastal surges mean that people must flee their homes. But where will they go?

Kadir van Lohuizen / NOOR has spent a decade documenting the impact of rising sea levels from vulnerable island nations to coastal megacities. The result is the book and exhibition, “After Us The Deluge,” a comprehensive examination of the greatest global threat we face today. In this work, the journalist and photographer asks,

Should humanity start preparing for the biggest displacement of people in known history? Are we doing all we can with all the knowledge we’ve got to prevent large-scale disaster? 

As a photographer, I can only capture what is already happening. My work is also a question made visible – a question about our future. 

Can we prevent a catastrophe? 

This is your wake-up call.