In Rome, 17 murals dedicated to the UN 2030 Agenda spread the culture of sustainability through street art.
The recently completed last wall by the well-known street artist Fabio Petani officially concludes the 3rd edition of Street Art for Rights in Rome, the festival that narrates and spreads the culture of sustainability through street art, in the sign of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the UN Agenda.
Street Art for Rights has established itself as a reference point for street art in Italy with over 30 works realized in Rome in the suburbs of Corviale and Settecamini and in Lazio between Cassino, Fiumicino and Latina. A true open-air museum that offers all fans and not, especially during the Christmas holidays, to get to know a ‘New Rome’, unprecedented and little known. Art breathes new life into the space of the suburbs in a triumph of colours that has breathed new life into the face of the neighborhoods. Thanks to Street Art for Rights, the urban space becomes a place where one can express oneself freely, an art gallery where the works do not remain confined to an elite audience but reach more and more citizens.
The Street Art for Rights project was in fact created with the intention of bringing art into the neighborhoods with difficult contexts in the outskirts of Rome, adopting the 17 Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and filtering them through the eye of contemporary art. The aim is to give artistic concreteness to the Action Plan for People, the Planet and Prosperity promoted by the UN, bringing the community closer to the various themes and stimulating discussion on the pressing problems of the contemporary era.
In this 3rd edition, the artists, selected for their civil commitment as well as their sign and artistic impact, Natalia Rak (Poland), Etnik (Sweden-Italy), Fabio Petani (Italy), Attorep (Italy), Barbara Oizmud (Italy), Davide Toffolo and Marqus (Italy), NSN997 (Spain), Manuela Merlo in art HUMAN (Italy), created 8 walls in the Settecamini, Ponte Mammolo and San Paolo neighbourhoods, dedicated to Global Goals 10 to 17 of Agenda 2030: GOAL 10 Reduce inequalities; GOAL 11 Sustainable cities and communities; GOAL 12 Sustainable consumption; GOAL 13 Fight climate change; GOAL 14 Life under water; GOAL 15 Life on earth; GOAL 16 Peace, justice and strong institutions; GOAL 17 Partnership for the goals. All the artists have returned, each from their own personal point of view, a powerful image on the key concept of sustainable development. In addition, all the walls were created using the special paints of the AirLite patent, products that can transform pollutants into salt molecules and initiate the photosynthesis process.
Street Art for Rights is conceived and directed by Giuseppe Casa, curated by Oriana Rizzuto, and organised by the cultural association Taste & Travel in collaboration with MArteSocial and MArteGallery. Much more than a simple festival, Street Art for Rights represents a true artistic and social action, which through street art aims to expand the space dedicated to witnessing good practices on sustainability issues – environmental, social and sustainable governance – with the desire that these will multiply, creating a chain reaction of positive contagious effects.
THE WALLS: THE ROUTE, ARTISTS AND PLACES IN DETAIL
ATTOREP – Via Settecamini 108, Rome
GOAL 10 – Reducing Inequality
Attorep, with its romantic portraits leading to reflection on increasingly fragile human relationships, has interpreted Global Goal number 10, namely Reducing Inequalities. The wall work depicts two faces, placed opposite each other, unidentifiable by race, ethnicity and gender thanks to the abstraction of colour. The two figures look into each other’s eyes, with a look of affection, love and inclusion.
Who is Attorep? An Italian artist, street artist and art curator, founder and art director of the OSA Operazione Street Art festival. He began to make a name for himself in the suburbs of Rome in 2015, exhibiting at the MACRO and creating works in the city. In 2018, he is the winner of the special Mario Moderni award dedicated to emerging artists by the Mario Moderni Foundation.
Davide Toffolo e Marqus – Via Settecamini 102, Rome
GOAL 11 – Sustainable Cities and Communities
Gothic-punk illustrator Davide Toffolo and Marqus have translated the theme of urban pollution through satire, depicting an enormous gorilla as king of a city with undefined borders and extension. A direct criticism of contemporary consumerism, maximum urbanisation and disrespect for the environment.
Who is Davide Toffolo? Davide Toffolo, in art el Tofo is an Italian cartoonist, songwriter and guitarist, frontman of the band Tre Allegri Ragazzi Morti. His graphic works involve both comics and animation. His graphic works concern both comics and animation. His two activities, cartoonist and musician, are not separate, but continually complemented by drawing and music performances, such as the musical atmospheres during his comic book exhibitions or the video clips of musical singles.
Who is Marqus? Marco Gortana, in art Marqus, is a street artist from Pordenone. He studied at the Brera Academy of Fine Arts: from there he decided to direct his art towards muralism and large-scale drawings. He has worked and travelled around the world, and as a young and original artist, he offers his imaginary vision of ideal cities.
Etnik – Via Settecamini 104, Rome
GOAL 12 – Sustainable Consumption
Internationally renowned urban artist Etnik, who has been active in the urban art scene for over 30 years, was inspired by Goal 12 for his mural with ”La casa nella casa – The House in the House”, the title of his work, which is not only a vision on real housing architecture dedicated to ecological and recycling issues, but at the same time a cue to work on ourselves, on our daily habits. With his geometric illustrations made of shapes, volumes and colours that sometimes lead to abstract figures, Etnik wants to represent the precarious balance of the human being and the incessant speed of the contemporary world. With this wall, Etnik also pursues a personal artistic research capable of conveying a strong message, the artist’s point of view on the city and the parts of which it is composed, and with it developing his peculiar poetics.
Who is Etnik? A Swedish-born artist currently based in Turin, he has been active in the graffiti writing scene since the early 1990s. He is currently one of the most successful street artists in the world thanks to his unmistakable style. Throughout his career, he has always sought a new way to overcome the classical limits of the discipline by taking mural painting to new heights, and has also devised and organised events that have brought together the best artists on the European scene. Since 2001, his way of painting began to evolve towards geometric and architectural forms, starting with lettering, which became the basis on which Etnik sets the entire conceptual and compositional framework of his artistic research. Today he works in his studio in Turin, travelling extensively to create large-scale wall paintings and participate in gallery exhibitions all over the world.
Fabio Petani – Via Settecamini 100, Rome
GOAL 13 – Fighting Climate Change
Artist Fabio Petani has interpreted Goal 13 by representing a glacier melting and turning into a desert. All enclosed within an abstract hourglass representing the passage of time, which is precious for saving our ecosystem.
Who is Fabio Petani? He is a member of the Il Cerchio E Le Gocce Association. His works are characterised by a disorderly harmony of lines, shapes and volumes that complement each other with soft and harmonious colours mixed with breaking elements. The research analyses the chemical and molecular aspect of the objects from which a long work of reconstruction of the elements of the periodic table is born; a production increasingly rich in details to bring out an organic complexity in continuous evolution. Each chemical element, like each plant, has in some way a connection with the environment, space or context where the mural is created.
Barbara Oizmud – Metro B Ponte Mammolo, Rome
GOAL 14 – Life Under Water
Barbara Oizmud has created an insightful reflection on life underwater and the increasing spread of microplastics in the seas. The work on the Ponte Mammolo underground wall is called ‘Polline‘, and is dedicated to aquatic flora and fauna. The artist reasoned about the 14th goal of the UN 2030 Agenda, which aims to ‘conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development’. The result of Oizmud’s work is a hybrid creature that has ended up in the abyss, the cause and at the same time the cure for a collective man-made wound. Polline is person and animal, it is object and coral. Pollen is a mirror of our society.
Who is Chi è Barbara Oizmud? Photographer and illustrator, her work has been published in magazines such as Wired, Vanity Fair, Style, GQ, GQ Spain, Rolling Stone, F Magazine, Financial Times, Cover Up, Shift Magazine, Mickey Mouse. He has also shot photo campaigns for clients such as Red Bull, Fox, Sky, Discovery, Fremantle Media, Universal, RomaEuropaFestival. From 2003 to 2006, she worked as a cartoonist collaborating on projects with RAI, one of Italy’s main television stations. In 2016 Barbara landed in Los Angeles. She is one of the five photographers chosen by David Lynch’s staff, from all over the world, to shoot a photographic reportage of his first Music Festival ‘Festival of Disruption’.
Natalia Rak – Via Settecamini 108, Rome
GOAL 15 – Life On Earth
Goal 15 is represented by Natalia Rak‘s work: a child, or perhaps a creature of the woods while sitting on a log, as in the fairytale tradition, plays the flute, which through its melody gives life to a dance of plants, flowers and butterflies. The creature is sitting on a cut tree trunk, a symbol of deforestation and desertification, and it is on it that he plays, instilling positivity and hope: it is not too late to stop and start new life.
Who is Natalia Rak? Since 2011, Polish artist Natalia Rak has been creating large-scale paintings in the form of beautiful murals. Her art has been exhibited throughout Europe in cities such as Düsseldorf (Germany), Barcelona (Spain) and Strasbourg (France). In addition, she has been featured in many group exhibitions and has participated in some of the most prestigious street art events, such as POW! WOW! (USA), Art Scape (Sweden), Montreal Mural Festival (Canada), Blink (USA), Urban Memories (Italy). His outstanding work for the Folk on the Street festival in Bialystok ‘Legend of the Giants’ was included in the series ‘Sztuka ulicy – Street Art’ published by the Polish Post Office.
Manuela Merlo in arte HUMAN – Via di Settecamini 102, Rome
GOAL 16 – Peace, Justice & Strong Institutions
The artist has represented Goal 16 by depicting a woman, symbolizing justice. The woman’s face is embellished with two pendants, symbolizing the scales of justice, while she is intent on embracing and caring for a white dove symbolizing peace. We find this latter symbol in a new form around the figure: two paper dove-origins that indicate the fragility of peace.
Who is Chi è Manuela Merlo? The encounter with StreetArt was disruptive for Manuela Merlo when she got to know the ‘Pittori Anonimi del Trullo’, the cultural association with which she collaborates on social projects, working on the territory with numerous StreetArt interventions in various neighbourhoods of Rome, especially in the Trullo district.
NSN997 – Scuola Media Volterra, Via Vito Volterra 190, San Paolo, Rome
GOAL 17 – Partnership for the Goals
The last point of the UN 2030 Agenda is a summary of the previous ones and gives the key to achieving them all: the basis must be partnership between countries and global economic and political harmony. NSN997 have created a wall entitled Cooperazione, representing the union of different disciplines, knowledge, cultures, ethnic groups and generations that make up the central ring, symbolizing a new, ecological, egalitarian and sustainable vision of the world.
Who is NSN997? It is the name of a crew founded in 1997 by three graffiti writers. In 2014 they started to develop their own style, consistent with the evolution of street art over the last decade. Positive messages, graphic and simple language, few colours and writing to talk about the better side of society. Since 2016 they have been part of the elKeller collective at the CSA laTabacalera in Madrid. In recent years, NSN997 has created works and participatory workshops in schools and public events. Their works can be found in Spain, Italy, Portugal, Greece, Belgium and Romania.
The project, promoted by the Department of Culture of Roma Capitale, is the winner of the Public Notice Contemporaneamente Roma 2020-2021-2022 edited by the Department of Cultural Activities and is realised in collaboration with SIAE and under the patronage of the Municipalities IV and VIII.
Street Art for RIGHTS is part of the activities developed by MArteSocial, an incubator focused on solving social problems through artistic and cultural projects that can generate a positive impact on the inhabitants of less developed neighborhoods experiencing hardship and marginalization. MArteGallery is a virtual space dedicated to the exhibition of artistic works in all fields (photography, painting, sculpture, graphics, etc.), whose main objective is to give space to young emerging artists, to support artists and galleries, and to spread the accessibility of culture and art with the possibility of purchasing the works on display. A true ‘art label’ dedicated to emerging artists and galleries, offering management and communication advice but also support, knowledge and tools to operate in the contemporary art world.
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