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Climate change: art in the service of awareness

Stream” is the name of a monumental and ephemeral piece of street-art that Parisians and tourists can discover from now to mid-June on the quays of the Seine.

Made by the German artist 1010, this huge trompe-l’oeil stretches for nearly 2 kilometres along the pedestrian lanes of the left bank of the river. Painted with water colours, this fresco will disappear with the rain. A concept consistent with the subject it interprets: the stream.


Can this type of artistic and participatory initiative promote awareness of the importance of rivers in our cities? More globally, can art facilitate the passage from knowhow to believing and from knowledge to commitment? Getting individual behaviours to evolve is a key factor in the combat against climate change and plastic pollution. For change to occur, individuals must feel emotionally committed by the challenge. Knowhow, forged by science, observation and experience, is not enough to spur the passage to action.

Art has the advantage of shifting one’s gaze, and via participatory methods, it can change perception and behaviour. The Ghost Net Art Project carried out in Australia is an illustration of this: it allows the Aborigine populations of an island in the Torres Strait to claim possession of industrial fishing nets lost at sea and make works that represent marine species in danger of extinction or which have become extinct. The exhibitions organised also show the disappearance of biodiversity and of an entire civilisation founded on an ancestral relationship with nature.

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