Arts Collective TBA21-Academy Seeks the Public’s Help to Aid Tonga

An arts collective known as TBA21-Academy is calling out for help to raise money to aid the current crisis in the Kingdom of Tonga.

Scientists estimate that the Hunga-Tonga-Hunga-Ha’apai volcanic eruption (and subsequent tsunami) that occurred underwater last week had the power of “1,000 Hiroshima bombs,” according to a statement on the Academy’s website. Numerous groups have rallied to support the South Pacific island country, including the International Red Cross and a GoFundMe page set up by Pita Taufatofua, the Tongan Olympic flag bearer. “We are following what is happening with deep concern as communication has been lost with the scattered low-lying islands, since the communication cable was damaged in the blast,” the Academy added.

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The Hunga-Tonga-Hunga-Ha’apai volcano had been just barely visible above the water for years, having only become a landmass after an eruption in 2015. TBA21–Academy visited the island several years later on a voyage manned by a group of researchers, led by the Danish artist group SUPERFLEX. Since the recent blast, an island has been destroyed and all communication to the outside world cut off.

UNICEF issued a statement saying that they “will work with the government, civil society organizations, and other development partners to ensure immediate response efforts on the ground, which includes providing clean water, and emergency health supplies for children and families affected.” Elon Musk also recently said that he would send Starlink terminals to help reconnect the island.

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Much of the true extent of the damages is still unknown, but what is certain, is that a great deal of help is still needed. To support, please visit UNICEF, TBA21-Academy and the International Red Cross.

Elsewhere, White Cube will present a solo exhibition on Isamu Noguchi.
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