Climate change art competition winners announced!

Climate change art competition winners announced!

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We are delighted to announce the winners of our climate change themed art competition!

In September, as part of our youth climate change project Stand for Nature Wales, we invited young people aged 9 to 24 across Wales to imagine what the world could look like if nature and humans coexisted and thrived alongside one another. 

With COP26 just around the corner, there has never been a more important time to take climate action. We wanted to showcase the future the young people of Wales want to see - a future full of wildlife and nature.

We received over 80 incredible pieces of art of various mediums all of which showcased the Wales we'd like to see for nature and humans alike. Entries were split into two age categories, 9 to 17 and 18 to 24 years old.

Our star-studded judging panel, which included BBC Radio 1 DJ Sian Eleri, Actor David Oakes, and Artist Tracey-Anne Sitch had the tough job of picking a winner and runner-up in each age category. 

Winner - 18 to 24 years old

"It's Within Our Hands" by Megan Elinor Jones, age 21

A painting of hands holding a coral reef abundant with nature

"It's within our hands" by Megan Elinor, aged 21

Megan had this to say:

"Around a quarter of our coral reefs have been damaged beyond repair due to coral bleaching, a global problem triggered by climate change. Reefs are left barren and skeletal white as the corals cannot withstand warmer oceans, pollution and overfishing. 

I feel like a lot of the time the impact climate change is having on the ocean is forgotten about as it's out of sight and therefore out of mind. 

Rainforests are roughly responsible for 28% of the Earth's oxygen, whereas 70% is produced by marine plants with the other 2% from other sources. So if we sit back and do nothing, we face loosing our unique rainforests of the sea, which are complex ecosystems in which we all depend on far more than we realise!! 

We cannot change the damage that has already been done but it is up to us as individuals to make conscious choices on how we respond to climate change and the events which happen due to it!! We need to act now!!" 

BBC Radio 1 DJ Sian-Eleri added:

“This is a striking piece of art. It is both intricately and technically complex, while its symbolism is crystal clear and beautifully executed. It emphasises our duty to care for rich marine life, and the urgency of protecting it. Hang this in the Louvre!”

Runner up - 18 to 24 years old

"Hedgehogs" by Tahlia David, age 23

A pattern of happy hedgehogs and foliage

Hedgehogs by Tahlia David, age 23

"I’ve always loved hedgehogs, and after spending the lockdown tracking and feeding a little friend in the garden, he became the inspiration for the hedgehog pattern. I think it’s so important to help them out where we can with their decline in population, the Wildlife Trusts website has some great information about how best to feed them, build them a house or help an injured one!" 

Winner - 9 to 17 years old

"The Tree of Harmony" by Megan Edwards, aged 11

A painting of a tree with various wildlife including a robin as well as wind turbines and solar panels in the background

"The Tree of Harmony" by Megan Edwards, age 11

Megan had this to say:

"My design is inspired by my love of trees and I like the idea of renewable energy and the tree is a sustainable place that holds lots of animals. The picture portrays humans living peacefully together in harmony with nature. It shows an invention where fish fertilise plants and the plants clean the water for the fish. There are solar panels and a wind turbine that is connected to the tree. Lots of animals live within the tree grounds such as the badger, bat, weasel, owl, caterpillar and robin. You can see me and the robin who is my companion as I watch everything as I love watching and identifying the birds and animals. I think of my family living inside the house in the tree."

BBC Radio 1 DJ, Sian-Eleri added:

“I love that this artist is bursting with ideas! It captures their love for nature, and envisions all kinds of possibilities for a brighter future. The details in this artwork are lovely too, from finding the little birdfeeder to spotting the robin on the fence. It’s creative, fun, and inspiring. What a Welsh oasis!”

Runner up - 9 to 17 years old

"Emma's Eco-friendly World" by Emma Bailey, age 9

Artwork which includes sculptures of people litter picking, planting trees and a solar powered car

"Emma's Eco-Friendly World" by Emma Bailey, age 9

"I have always wanted to show my ideas on how to care for the planet. In my model it shows someone planting trees, a solar panel car and people litter picking".

Why now?

There has never been a more important time to take action for nature. We are currently facing a climate and nature emergency, with 17% of species in Wales at risk of extinction. But we can change this. By putting nature into recovery, we can and will tackle climate change. Thriving habitats can safely lock up vast amounts of carbon, while providing other vital benefits that help us adapt, such as flood prevention, clean water and improved health and wellbeing.

Through our Stand for Nature Wales project we are empowering young people to come together and take climate action in their local area. From campaigning for change to tree planting and beach cleans! We have youth forums dotted across Wales, bursting with ideas and enthusiasm! If you'd like to get involved in your local area, get in touch with your local team.

Get involved

Thank you!

We wanted to say a huge thank you to our Stand for Nature Wales project funders, National Lottery Community Action Fund. We'd also like to thank Opticron who kindly donated some amazing binoculars for our winners! 

A huge thank you to our judges, Sian-Eleri Evans, David Oakes and Tracey-Anne Sitch for taking the time to review the incredible entries received! 

And last but not least, thank you to all who entered our competition! We were overwhelmed with the quality of artwork and are delighted to be able to spread the word about the future the young people of Wales want to see ahead of COP26.

Join your local youth forum!

If you're 9-24 years old, join your local youth forum and take climate action in your area!

I'm in!

The Stand for Nature Wales team whilst on a team visit to Cors Dyfi Nature Reserve. Photo by Silvia Cojocaru

Take climate action at home

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