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This article is the latest in our series #Art4Climate, a joint initiative by the UNFCCC secretariat and Julie’s Bicycle on the work of artists who make the issue of climate change more accessible and understandable by featuring it in their work. It was inspired by a session at the Salzburg Global Seminar in early 2017.

The Italian artist Lorenzo Quinn, supported by the secretariat of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), is putting out a call asking where his world famous sculpture depicting hands rising from Venice’s Grand Canal should be located next.

The artwork, dubbed ‘Support’ was created to coincide with the opening of this year’s Venice Biennale International Art Exhibition. It is one of many art projects drawing attention to the impacts of climate change ahead of COP23, the upcoming UN Climate Change Conference in Bonn (6-17 November). The artwork will remain in Venice until 26 November 2017, after which it needs a new home.

The major UN Climate Change Conference conference in Germany this year is being presided over by Fiji, an island nation that shares the vulnerability of many other low-lying locations in the world threatened by sea level rise, including Venice. Along with many other artists this year, Lorenzo Quinn is keen to draw attention to man-made climate change as the cause for rising sea levels.

“As a father of three, I am concerned about the world we are handing over to our children. Time is pressing to make the necessary changes to curb human activity that is affecting the earth's climate and causing devastating side effects that concern humanity as whole. These effects are threatening to change our geography and by that erase cultures, natural wonders and fauna across the globe. As an artist I believe that I can reach people from a different perspective and hopefully stir them emotionally into taking action, as small as it may seem at the time, so that collectively we can make a change,” Lorenzo said.

Lorenzo Quinn’s new monumental sculpture now installed at the Ca’ Sagredo Hotel during Venice Biennale 2017

The hands, modeled after those of Lorenzo’s son Anthony, took two full days to install. They are about 9m in height and weight approximately 2500kg (5,800lbs) each, and are made entirely from recycled materials.

‘Support’ was placed on a barge that was pushed by tug boat all the way to Ca' Sagredo sailing up the Grand Canal

Where Should ‘Support’ Go Next?

Where would you like to see ‘Support’? Send your suggestions to supportatvenice@halcyongallery.com. Learn more about ‘Support’ and Lorenzo Quinn here.

#Art4Climate is a joint initiative by the UNFCCC and Julie’s Bicycle to spot and propose super recent and new works in this broad field, but we also want to hear from you! Please send any proposals for showcasing to newsroom@unfccc.int or Chiara@juliesbicycle.com.

Please amplify our web posts with Twitter hashtag #Art4Climate and #COP23!

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