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Photo by Jill Pelto

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Jill Pelto Gallery


6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th


Science, Biology, Visual and Performing Arts

Resource Type

  • Artwork

Regional Focus

North America, United States, USA - Northeast, Maine


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  • Jill Pelto incorporates graphs into visual art in an elegant way, blending the meaning and relevance of the data into an artistic representation that expands the impact of the data.
  • "Overgrown" uses graphs of predicted temperature rise as a visual break to demonstrate the impact of climate change on native plant species in Maine, including the changes in their abundance and the new plant species that will move in with rising temperatures.
Teaching Tips


  • "Overgrown" illustrates the beauty of the plants that will be affected by temperature rise and a visual representation of habitat loss.
  • Pelto showcases alternative ways of using data to make a point that is instantly relatable to a broad spectrum of students that may not otherwise relate to graphed data.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students need to understand how graphs represent data and how to read a graph.


  • Art classes can use this as an example of line in art, botanical illustration, and meaning through composition.
  • Math classes can use this as an example of the relevance of data and mathematics in varying subjects.
  • Science classes will be able to use this as a launch point or hook for discussing how temperature affects plant communities and ecosystems.
  • Other similar resources include the Sea Walls art pieces, this activity, and this video.
Scientist Notes
The resource underscores climate projections and its influence to the ecological system in Maine. Students can explore this resource to understand the correlation of climate change to species loss and migration. This resource is suitable and recommended for teaching.
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • LS2: Ecosystems: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics
      • HS-LS2-2 Use mathematical representations to support and revise explanations based on evidence about factors affecting biodiversity and populations in ecosystems of different scales.
  • National Core Arts Standards
    • Visual Arts: Standard 6 - Convey meaning through the presentation of artistic work.
      • VA:Pr6.1.8a Analyze why and how an exhibition or collection may influence ideas, beliefs, and experiences.
    • Visual Arts: Standard 7 - Perceive and analyze artistic work.
      • VA:Re7.2.Ia Analyze how one’s understanding of the world is affected by experiencing visual imagery.
      • VA:Re7.2.IIa Evaluate the effectiveness of an image or images to influence ideas, feelings, and behaviors of specific audiences.
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