Coal Comforts will be the first of its kind, a pop-up art "bakery" in which the familiar-looking treats on offer will not be what they appear— they'll be made of ash from burned coal. It will make its debut for Gowanus Open Studios 2017, the weekend of October 21st-22nd, outside of the Gowanus Souvenir Shop (567 Union Street in Brooklyn). 


Bundt Cake
8 "x 8" x 4" // coal ash, resin // 2017

Coal Comforts was made possible by the generous support of its backers on Kickstarter. Each inedible item in the bakery was cast from the real thing.  

Read more about it on Hyperallergic, and follow @spencermerolla on Instagram for updates on the project.




This is about climate change. Coal power has never been "clean" and continuing to mine and burn it causes irreparable harm to frontline communities and accelerates climate change. The current administration wants to prop up this outmoded industry without regard to the known consequences. As we have seen, nostalgia is a powerful tool—it can make what is familiar seem wholesome and innocuous, as "American as apple pie." But like the sweet treats we might find in an old-fashioned bakery, a little dirty energy might look like a harmless enough indulgence, but our global consumption patterns will be our undoing. Put simply, we can't have our cake and eat it too.

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