electric rainfall


Format 1: 132 x 202 cm / 52 x 79.5 in, edition of 6 + 2 AP
Format 2: 67 x 102 cm / 26.3 in x 40.2, edition of 6 + 2 AP
Hybrid photography, archival pigment print, aludibond, diasec, custom-made wood/ aluminium frame

The extreme effects of climate change are now evident across the planet. Rising temperatures, heat waves, water scarcity. The desert regions of the United Arab Emirates are particularly threatened, especially in the summer months when they have to cope with great heat and enormous humidity. Temperatures between 40 and 50 degrees are now the norm, water is becoming an increasingly scarce resource, only about 70 liters of rainwater fall in Dubai per year and per square meter. To combat the heat waves, which are becoming ever stronger as a result of climate change, the Emirates, in cooperation with the University of Reading in England, have now developed a new "rain enhancement" technology to generate artificial rain using drones. These are catapulted into the air in search of clouds of the right temperature and humidity, and then emit an electric shock, a type of laser flash. The electrical charging of clouds results in cloud condensation or small water droplets being compressed into larger droplets. Once these are dense and heavy enough, they fall to earth as rain. In July 2021, the desert area in and around Dubai was hit by massive rain showers for the first time, apparently resulting from manipulated clouds.

The work "electric rainfall" visualizes the creation of artificial rain using electrical drone impulses. The 3-part composition consists of an extensive desert landscape, an urban skyline and dramatic cloud formations. The viewer's gaze glides over a sandy desert landscape whose undulating dunes are reminiscent of sea waves. The skyline of Dubai stretches out on the horizon, an artificial metropolis made of concrete, glass and steel. At the center of the composition is the 828 m high Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world. The pointed architecture draws the eye up into the cloudy sky. Shiny, small spherical objects fly through the gray clouds, which seem unnaturally compressed. The dramatic intensity of the cloud composition, from which a two-forked lightning bolt flashes in the middle, gives the viewer a premonition that it’s going to rain over the desert. All over the world, innovative solutions to the extreme effects of climate change are now being researched.
It remains open, however, as to what the later consequences of the manipulation of natural processes on earth could be.


Personally liable:
Michael Najjar

Design concept & coding: Matthias Hübner, possible.is
with support by Marco Land

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