The reality of extinction can be hard to communicate to those disconnected from nature, so artist Louis Masai brought it to their urban landscape. Painting huge, vibrant murals of threatened species around London, Masai shows the power of the image to re-engage.
The presence of art in unexpected places gives pause for thought, making people aware of the vital work that needs to and can be done to protect nature.
Threatened, extinct and invasive species have been introduced to London’s streets: just as street art can seemingly materialise and then disappear overnight, animals once familiar to the British landscape are vanishing.
‘This Is Now’ was shot by talented filmmaker Toby Madden and features a soundtrack by composer Cosmo Sheldrake whose palette is rich with species recordings. Louis Masai Michel is fast becoming an international voice for conservation, raising environmental consciousness through art in public places.
This is Now – the street art and film campaign – was conceived by Synchronicity Earth, to help us activate a coordinated response to the planet’s extinction crisis; recognising that most of the required solutions to environmental problems have yet to be devised.
Synchronicity Earth supports on-the-ground conservation action and creates spaces for cognitive dissidence, working alongside artists, young people, conservationists, activists, film-makers, scientists and enlightened business-leaders to co-create a world in which all life is valued, regardless of economic ‘worth.’
The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™ provides taxonomic, conservation status and distribution information on plants, fungi and animals that have been globally evaluated using the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria. This system is designed to determine the relative risk of extinction, and the main purpose of the IUCN Red List is to catalogue and highlight those plants and animals that are facing a higher risk of global extinction (i.e. those listed as Critically Endangered, Endangered and Vulnerable).