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Olafur Eliasson’s Ice Watch in Paris gives a glimpse at climate change

2 years ago

“Ice Watch” showcases 80 tons of ice from a fjord outside Nuuk, Greenland with the aim of inspiring public action against climate change.

Harvested from free-floating blocks of ice, the work has been arranged in a clock formation on the Place du Panthéon on Thursday, 3 December 2015, while world leaders and their climate teams gathered in Le Bourget, Paris to discuss how to ensure a stable climate for future generations. In the days following, the ice will be allowed to melt in the square, offering the general public a glimpse at climate change on our planet.

“Today we have access to reliable data that sheds light on what will happen and what can be done,” said Olafur Eliasson. “Let’s appreciate this unique opportunity – we, the world, can and must act now. Let’s transform climate knowledge into climate action. As an artist I hope my works touch people, which in turn can make something that may have previously seemed quite abstract more a reality. Art has the ability to change our perceptions and perspectives on the world, and Ice Watch makes the climate challenges we are facing tangible. I hope it will inspire shared commitment to taking climate action.”

“From my visit to the Arctic last year, I have a very lively memory of the horrifying noise and sight of huge ice blocks cracking and breaking away from the pack,” said Laurent Fabius, French Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development, and President of COP21. “The Arctic is indeed the gatekeeper of climate disorder: for years, this region has been sending us signals that we cannot neglect anymore. The international community must hear them and turn them into acts.”

Ice Watch Paris, Place du Panthéon, from 3 to 13 December 2015

My Art Guides Editorial Team

  • Olafur Eliasson, Ice Watch, 2015. Courtesy of the artist. Olafur Eliasson, Ice Watch, 2015. Courtesy of the artist.
  • Olafur Eliasson, Ice Watch, 2015. Courtesy of the artist. Olafur Eliasson, Ice Watch, 2015. Courtesy of the artist.

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