In a new art project in Skärholmen, Stockholm, children have been asked to paint what hides within their minds. In several of the artworks you can see how the children have been affected by the ongoing climate debate that characterizes society and the children have thus painted their concerns about climate change.
In the project “Min spegelbild” (“My reflection”), 160 children aged five to 19 from Stockholm schools Sätraskolan, Bredängsskolan, Söderholmsskolan and Lindeparkens gymnasiesärskola in collaboration with the libraries in Skärholmen and Bredäng participated in creating the public artworks. The artworks are placed along Stockholmshem’s building at Bredholmstorget in Skärholmen. The project was handled by Roma youngsters who were then instructed in digital illustration by the city’s media educators.
The idea behind the project was for the children to illustrate their thoughts and talk about who they are, according to a press release from Stockholmshem. The works include some that showcase leisure interests, for example. For example, a 12-year-old has drawn a basketball and a 13-year-old girl has drawn herself drinking a milkshake in bed. One young person chose to draw a dog because dogs “are so loyal and bring joy”.
Another distinctive feature of the artworks are illustrations of climate change or climate anxiety. For example, a 10-year-old boy has written “Ta hand om mej” (“Take care of me”) in big letters.
– In six generations, they may not have this beautiful environment that we have, the 10-year-old told local newspaper Mitt i Stockholm.
A ten-year-old girl in the same class has also focused on climate anxiety, painting a crying person in a pink bubble surrounded by crossed-out images of planes and trees being cut down.
– Exhaust fumes from planes and cars are bad, trees are being cut down, the ice is melting and there is oil in the sea, the girl says. I think a lot about this and whether my children and grandchildren will be able to see this beautiful nature that I see.
The artworks will remain in place until the construction is completed at the end of next year. Some of the works will be placed in the new high-rise building on Bredholmstorget in Skärholmen and some in other Stockholmshem residential buildings.
The art project "My reflection"
- The art project is one of three parts of a three-month paid internship where nine youths work with different art forms, employed by the labor market administration. Public housing company Stockholmshem is responsible for the project managers' salaries and materials and Unga Berättar (Young people tell stories) is responsible for project management and supervisors.
- The illustrations are made in the program Procreate. Together, the more than 160 parts form a composition in 30 sections that are printed on plates that are mounted on the building board. They can be reused when the house is finished and the fence is removed. For added security, the art will also be illuminated in the evening.