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COP23 – Exhibitions and sculpture

3. november 2017 - 17. november 2017

Sculptural Outcries in Bonn

Danish artist Jens Galschiot has a long history of contributing with art to UN climate summits e.g. Johannesburg’92, COP15 in Denmark, Rio+20 in Brazil, COP21 in France and COP22 in Morocco.

During COP23 Galschiot exhibits a number of art installations in Bonn, highlighting the climate crisis from different angles.


A real size polar bear in copper is impaled 6m above ground, on an oil pipeline in shape of a CO2-graph. The sculpture is a visualization of the climate situation.

The graph impaling the bear shows the real cumulative global fossil fuel carbon emissions. Throughout the centuries the graph creeps along the ground then rises dramatically around year 1850 as human consumption of fossil fuels like coal and oil takes off.

Unbearable was first presented at COP21 in Paris’ 2015. The summit ended with an ambitious agreement, but since then the CO2-emission has kept rising. Therefore the CO2 graph that impales the polar bear will be updated with an extension of 27 centimeters in Bonn (see event below). 

The sculpture has been exhibited in Paris and in front of the Danish Parliament. After Bonn we plan to bring it to New York as a message to President Trump. Support and contacts for this project is greatly appreciated.

Location: Rheinaue Park in Bonn, at the corner of the lake next to Charles de Gaulle Straße.

Exhibition time: Nov. 3rd – 17th, 2017.

Side event: Nov. 15th at 15.30-18.00 (details below)   


Freedom to Pollute (and Trump)

A 6-meter high kitschy replica of the Statue of Liberty emitting smoke from the torch. The document in her hand displays the text ‘Freedom to Pollute’.

The sculpture symbolizes the conflict between the western world’s concept of freedom, as a right for unbridled consumption versus the concern for the climate and the planet. Do we have the right to live the way we do?

“Donald Trump” drives around with the statue behind his VW convertible at the demonstrations, with the message that the free world has the freedom to pollute.  

Location: Various places in Bonn during COP23.

On Nov. 11th demonstration at 10.30 by Bonn Central train station.


Polar Bear Army

The legendary ’army’ of polar bears was last seen at COP21 in Paris. Now it has come to Bonn to protest against the climate changes on the North Pole. The ‘Army’ can be seen all over Bonn, in the streets, at the conference, by the sculpture Unbearable and in the demonstrations on Nov. 4th and 11th.


Climate Refugees

Bronze sculptures of climate refugees. They symbolize the hundreds of millions of climate refugees our unsustainable way of living will create.

Location: With Freedom to Pollute (above), by Greenpeace’s ship and elsewhere.


Artist Talk & Unbearable-event (Nov.15th, 15.30-18.00)

The Unbearable graph is extended with the last two years CO2-emissions, showing how the climate situation has become even more critical since the COP21 Paris agreement in 2015. We hope you will join us for discussions and a glass at this event.   

15.30-16.30: Artist Jens Galschiøt presents his art manifestations and talks about the role of art in the climate debate. At Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), Charles de Gaulle Straße 5.   

16.30-17.15: The graph of the Unbearable sculpture is extended. By the sculpture in Rheinaue Park next to Charles de Gaulle Straße.

17.15-18.00: Reception at FSC, Charles de Gaulle Straße 5.   




3. november 2017
17. november 2017


charles de Gaulle Strasse 5, Bonn
Bonn, Germany + Google Map