Many artists use their work to promote an agenda or to raise awareness of a certain issue. For example, two artists who have managed to use art to create awareness on social issues such as climate change are Olafur Eliasson and Banksy.
Olafur Eliasson has created many innovative artworks to raise awareness of our environment. One of his artworks, Ice-Watch, consisted of man-made ice blocks. He wanted to highlight that rising sea levels is due to global warming. His other work – Little Sun is a mini portable lamp. The aim of this project was to create awareness of energy access and climate action. He donated Little Sun to people who did not have access to electricity in Ethiopia. Now, Little Sun has changed the lives of about two million people. Olafurs projects have made me reflect upon myself and changed my mindset towards climate change. I used to take global warming for granted but now his artworks have shown me the gravity of climate change. He has also inspired me to help others with innovative solutions.
Banksy is a British graffiti artist, political activist and film director. He is famous for his graffitis that utilise satire, dark humor and irony to engage his viewers and make them reflect on the irony and glaring truths of capitalism, politics, and humanity. One of Banksys famous graffiti is called The Girl With Balloon. The work depicts a young girl, whose hair and dress are blowing in the wind, reaching for, or releasing, a red, heart-shaped balloon that has slipped from her grasp, flying out of reach. At the bottom of the artwork, he wrote There is always hope. This artwork has left a deep impression on society because of how universal it is. He had captured a feeling that everyone has experienced at some point. His drawing of Jesus holding up shopping bags is also thought-provoking as it reminds people that Christmas is not all about shopping for gifts. I used to think that graffiti was an act of vandalism but now that I have seen Bankys art, I think graffiti can be used in meaningful ways to spread important messages.
To sum it up, art can be appealing and fascinating at first glance, but theres always a deeper meaning behind it. Art can be a catalyst for change for it inspires, provokes and encourages reflection. Leonardo Da Vincis anatomical drawings changed the way artists and scientists studied the human body. Today, we have many artists whose works have changed the way we view social issues.