While the environment has always been a concern and consideration in our personal lives and many of our business decisions, events of 2020 shocked us into some deep soul-searching and a commitment to do better.  The abrupt pause in travel during the early stages of the pandemic brought an immediate improvement to notoriously and chronically polluted environments, with clean air in cities like L.A. and New Delhi, clear water in the canals of Venice, and a rebound in wildlife populations.  Later in the year, severe heat and massive wildfires in California shattered any remaining complacency and delusion.  Anyone who was in the Bay Area in September of 2020 will never forget the apocalyptic smoke-choked, orange sky. 


In the art industry, communal angst coalesced in the form of several organizations, notably Art + Climate Action in the US and Gallery Climate Coalition in the UK.  Hosfelt Gallery joined these collectives in their commitment to reduce the art world's carbon footprint by 50% by 2030.  The starting point was calculating our 2019 carbon output, using the GCC's free calculator, to determine the baseline from which we'd reduce our emissions.  In 2019, we produced 93.77 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent.  By 2022, we had reduced our output to 52.75 tCO2e — a 44% reduction.  Importantly, this reduction came not from buying offsets, but by actually reducing our negative impacts:  flying less, shipping more thoughtfully and producing less waste.  Our annual carbon reports can be found below.  We aim to meet our goal of 50% reduction by the end of 2023 — seven years ahead of schedule — and to keep cutting. 


We've worked closely with Jodi Roberts, co-founder of Art + Climate Action, on several initiatives, including our Climate Action 8 x 8 commitments, which can be viewed below.  Simultaneously, we're actively looking for ways to support our team to make more climate-friendly personal decisions.  One policy we've recently put into place is to reward team members with an extra paid day off for every 30 days that they walk, bike or take public transportation to work.


But real change can only come from collective action, and that means collaboration.  Todd Hosfelt is frequently asked to share the gallery's climate action experience.  You can view a panel presentation from the 2023 FOG Design+Art fair here.


Todd is also a member of the committee that plans the Art Dealers Association of America's annual art fair at the Park Avenue Armory in New York City, and has spearheaded, along with the ADAA's Executive Director, Maureen Bray, an aggressive sustainability initiative in partnership with strategists from the global design and planning firm, Gensler, and the production company for the fair, Sanford L. Smith + Associates.  The first year of those efforts resulted in substantive eco-friendly alternatives to the current art fair model, as well as base-line carbon calculations from a sample of participating galleries.  From the results of those calculations, strategists from Gensler drafted a roadmap for a more sustainable ADAA art fair, which can be used to improve the impact of any art fair or trade show.  That document — with detailed and concrete ways for reducing the environmental impacts of production, travel and shipping — is being shared with galleries, museums, and other art fairs and trade show organizers, to help our community meet and exceed its environmental aspirations.  We will link to that document here once it is available.


More resources, links, and projects can be viewed below.