Shared Planet captures a glimpse of the moment in time when the world came to a standstill for humans during lockdown and the environment and wildlife began to thrive. Influenced by the documentary ‘The Year Earth Changed’ the work explores nature’s response to the low human activity during the global lockdown. Looking at wildlife, noise pollution, air and water quality the work acts as ‘visual activism’ to explore global warming, reflecting data and research to share the issues in an alternative form. Furthermore, seeking to open a conversation about how we can identify more harmonious ways for humans and wildlife to co-exist and how this can have a profound impact on nature and give us hope for the future of our planet.
Noise references the effects of the lockdown on noise pollution, particularly in cities. During this time the amount of urban road traffic and city noise was significantly reduced, meaning that the negative impact of noise pollution was lower. Not only referencing the benefits humans experienced due to this activity, the character looks at the impact on animals, particularly communications between birds.
Wildlife focuses on how different species thrived during the global lockdown. Due to the lack of human activity especially in terms of the reduction in travel, the amount of animals killed on the roads was significantly reduced. The lack of tourists and locals visiting coastal locations saw an increase in sea turtles laying eggs on the beaches. The character explores where animals followed their natural instincts and resumed these practices that are often interrupted by human activity.
Water is based on the effects of the global lockdown on water quality and sea life. This short period of restriction in industrial sectors and economic activities offered an opportunity for water quality in seas and rivers to increase. In turn the activity of sea life began to thrive, populations of fish became greater and the lack of water travel decreased the risk of marine animals getting injured.
Air looks at the effects of the global lockdown on air quality during this time. As human activity was at a minimum, the air pollution levels were significantly lower. This resulted in changes in weather, fewer children were developing conditions such as asthma and skylines were clear enough to see sights that hadn’t been seen in decades. The characters comically move and dance as air particles not constricted by pollution in the air, furthermore referencing the freeness to breathe and healthier children in this time.
Menex - Music & Sound Design @dimitris_menex