Seven Meters, a group of art activists, has been installing statues in Copenhagen during the UN COP15 Summit on Climate Change, bearing witness to the effects of climate change on people around the world. Launched by Danish artist Jens Galschiot and Art in Defence of Humanism, AIDOH, the campaign has included the placement of red LED lights, “Hunger Boys”, “Survival of the Fattest”, ‘Wandering Refugees”, “Freedom to Pollute”, “The Messenger”, and the “Balancing Act”.
7 meters line in Copenhagen (only 6-18 December) is a visualization of the 7 metres rising in the sea level if all the ice on Greenland melts. On a 24 kilometers long distance in Copenhagen thousands of blinking red lights mark the potential new water level in the height of 7 meters.
The 4½ high bronze sculpture ’The Messenger’ features a woman standing next to an LED indicator displaying the numbers of people being displaced by climate change, and the amount of CO2 emitted by the conference. The entire installation and the actual metro are covered in red, pulsating LED-light, which follows the geological ‘pulse’ of the earth and is more than 300 metres long. During the COP15 conference the pulse changed according to the achievement at the Summit.
“Freedom to Pollute”, on the big hill at Amager Fælled, is a 6 metres high copy of the Statue of Liberty which sends out smoke from the torch.
“Wandering Refugees” are three 10-metres high sculptures with copper faces, representing African women with long dresses in screaming colours. They are standing on a savannah-like area reminding us of female refugees in Sudan.
“Survival of the Fattest”, is a statue in the water next to The little Mermaid. An African figure carries a large woman who holds the scales of justice. The sculpture confronts ‘The little Mermaid and the Danish self-perception with the goddess of justice of the real world.
Jens Galschiot has set up a balancing Obama-like sculpture doing a handstand on a 7 -meter pole. The sculpture is the first of four new Balancing Act sculptures being set up on different locations in Copenhagen.
“Hunger Boys” sets evocative African figures in the ditches outside the Bella Center Metro Station. The bronze sculptures are 160 centimeters tall and symbolize the danger that many people will have to flee due to the rising of the water.
Galschiot provides his thinking behind the project.
“With this manifestation I will highlight the climate crisis, and the fact, that it is not only a problem for the polar bears and the nature. The global warming may be a catastrophe for humanity. UN says that over 200 million refugees will be a reality in the next 40 years. The refugees will trigger a giant demographic crisis, with risks of closing the national borders and beginning an ‘all against all fight, to protect our territory against the refugees, which our own CO2 leak has created. A frightening scenario that will put our humanistic and democratic civilisation under intense pressure, so that war and rise of totalitarian systems might be the consequence. This is the legacy that we will leave to our children!”.