Covering Carbon by Kathleen Thum

Thursday, September 7, 2023 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Covering Carbon is an exhibition that explores the complex relationship between humans and fossil fuels. The series of drawings and cut-paper wall installations presented in the exhibition examine the physical, material qualities of coal and oil, aiming to raise awareness of our disconnection and dependence on these resources. Through different visual and conceptual approaches, the exhibition highlights the power and impact of fossil fuels on our contemporary existence, while also acknowledging their hidden and mysterious nature, controlled by the industry.

The artworks in the exhibition offer a multi-sensory experience that engages the viewer in a critical reflection of our relationship with fossil fuels. The large-scale cut-paper installations explore the vastness of the petroleum infrastructure, evoking the physical and emotional experience of the petroleum landscape. Meanwhile, the series of charcoal drawings captures the materiality and darkness of coal’s impact on our environment, urging us to confront the environmental cost of our dependence on this resource. Overall, Covering Carbon invites us to think more deeply about our connection to fossil fuels and the ways in which we can use art to inspire change and address the challenges of the current climate crisis.

Artist Statement

My artwork revolves around the subject of fossil fuels. I use different visual and conceptual approaches to examine the infrastructure created by the fossil fuel industries and to explore the physical, material qualities of coal and oil. Through my work, I aim to heighten an awareness of our disconnection and dependence on fossil fuels. Oil and coal are an integral part of our contemporary existence, yet remain mysterious and unknown substances, contained and controlled by the industry. Overall, my work aims to raise awareness and spark conversations about our relationship with energy and the environment.

Please join us for the opening reception on Thursday, August 24 from 5-7 p.m. Register here:

For more info about exhibition lectures and the digital catalog, visit:


Exhibition dates: August 24, 2023 - September 29, 2023 | Opening Reception: Thursday, August 24 from 5-7 p.m. | Closing Reception & Artist Talk: Friday, September 29 from 5-7 p.m. (talk at 6 p.m.)

Admission is FREE and open to the public.
Monday–Friday, 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. 
Closed on major holidays 


Parking: Free parking is available in Garage F next to the Addition Financial Arena. Parking lot H4 or Garage I requires the purchase of a $5 daily virtual visitor permit. Please note that visitors should park in green student spaces ONLY, as the $5 daily virtual permit does not cover red and blue spaces. Purchase a virtual permit here:

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