Young people called on to design climate murals in Hackney and other UK places

A mural of bottle nose dolphins in Aberystwyth.

A mural of bottle nose dolphins in Aberystwyth raises awareness of the need to protect local wildlife, before the UN Climate Chance Conference (COP26) takes place in Glasgow in November. - Credit: UK Youth for Nature

With just two months until the UN Climate Chance Conference (COP26) begins in Glasgow, young Hackney people are being called upon to inspire action to protect biodiversity via a national art competition. 

Any young person aged 12-25 across Britain can enter the Grantham Climate Art Prize 2021, and seven winners will see their designs transformed into murals in outdoor community spaces across the UK, including in Hackney.

The Hackney mural will be painted by artist Michelle Meola and should feature one at risk local species, such as the British grass snake, brown banded cardar bee, cinnabar moth, common toad, European eel, horehound longhorn moth, house sparrow, song thrush, stag beetle or soprano pipistrelle bat.

Helen Cammock, winner of the Turner Prize, who is the patron of the Grantham Climate Art Prize, said: "I feel privileged to support a prize that enables young artists to communicate their commitment, ideas and sense of urgency about how we tackle the climate crisis."

Winning entries will also be displayed in regional Real World Science network art galleries, museums, on social media and on advertising billboards. Each winner will also receive £250 in cash. 

The young peoples' designs must be inspired by regional endangered species and biodiversity loss, and can incorporate messages of hope and calls to action. 

The competition aims to raise awareness for local climate change issues and inspire action ahead of the UN’s Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow this November. 

Dr Will Pearse, one of the scientists supporting the Grantham Climate Art Prize, added: "We are seeing the impacts of climate change only now beginning to start. 

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"We are beginning to have losses of species. What we are in danger of losing is not just the species themselves, but also the services that they provide us."

Last year, the first official Red List for British Mammals produced by a consortium of organisations including the Mammal Society for Natural England and the Joint Nature Conservation Committee, found that one quarter of native British mammals are at risk of extinction.

Designs can be submitted from September 1 - 24 at