“Use on Land”—the index of thirteen levels measuring the effects of wind force published in 1806 by British sea admiral Sir Francis Beaufort. Through a system of observation, the scale measures the wind speed by observing how it decomposes on land (e.g. leaves are blown from trees, chimney pots lifted, houses are destroyed) and, respectively, how it composes at sea (e.g. waves are formed). The publication is the first more
of two volumes (followed by ), which are part of the curatorial initiative The WORK OF WIND: AIR, LAND, SEA, developed in 2018–21 by Christine Shaw, Director/Curator of the Blackwood Gallery at the University of Toronto Mississauga. The two books continue K.’s curatorial approach to publishing, inviting the reader-as-exhibition-viewer to navigate a broad multidisciplinary field of inquiry and experimentation, sensing a rise of intensity in form and content as the pages turn from 0 (Calm) to 12 (Hurricane). Continuing K.’s curatorial approach to publishing by inviting the reader-as-exhibition-viewer to navigate a broad multidisciplinary field of inquiry and experimentation, the volume aims to foster a deeper public awareness of the complex entanglements of ecologies of excess, environmental legacies of colonialism, the financialization of weather, contemporary catastrophism, politics of sustainability, climate justice, and hopeful resilience. Across a variegated set of curatorial and editorial instantiations, the Beaufort Scale of Wind Force becomes a diagram of prediction and premonition in the context of our accelerating planetary extinction. While the title might suggest a weather project, it is not about wind but of wind, of the forces of composition and decomposition predicated on extraction, dispossession, accumulation, and infrastructure.