Watch The World’s Changing Seasons, Via Google Earth


The Mayan end-of-the-earth thing didn’t happen, but the end of the year is still coming, and now, thanks to an odd discovery, we have a new way to watch the world change before our eyes. It’s called “Abstract Season Changes,” and it’s a Tumblr, and it’s amazing.

The Tumblr was created by Elena Radice — an Italian artist who works in film, sculpture, and print. Sometimes, in order to unwind, she would visit Google Earth, and look at aerial photos of places she had never visited.

After years of doing this, she noticed an odd quirk about Google Earth. As the satellite photos updated and revised the picture of the earth, images would be joined together in a patchwork-quilt type of fashion. There would be a composite image of the same landscape, half in the summer, and half in the winter; resulting in half-frozen rivers, mountains that were covered by late-December snow and also mid-August sunshine.

Abstract Season Changes is her Tumblr collecting these images. The Co.Exist website recently profiled Ms. Radice, who views the photos as being a commentary on memory:

Sometimes I find Google Maps joints between iced and not iced sea,” she says, “between a desert and a river that exists only in winter or doesn’t exist anymore, between perfectly defined fields and an expanse of muddy water which destroyed them, or maybe just makes them more fertile.”

…She is more interested in these images as a portrayal of time than location, and as a comment on what she calls the useless effort of keeping memories.

Another viewer might see in this digital art a reference to climate change, to a world where we increasingly live with mixed-up seasons, with snowstorms in spring and long summers that stretch late into the year.

Here are some selected images from Abstract Season Changes. You can view many more at the Tumblr itself .

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