One of our favorite street intervention collectives we have seen over the past year is Luzinterruptus, a Madrid-based group that takes high-concept street art to a new level with fully interactive pieces that highlight the problems in the given city they work in. Pharmacy Herbs deals with light pollution in Madrid.
A statement from the artists...
Of all the environmental pollution that can be found in the city of Madrid, the most evident is light pollution, so much so that in our sky we can never see the Milky Way and hardly any stars. This overillumination is evident to the naked eye at a distance of more than 200 kms and produces a glow that can be seen with a medium-size telescope for more than 700 kms...
In addition to the obvious color change of the streets, the neighbors who live in the vicinity of 24 hour pharmacies, have watched impotently as every night their rooms become disturbing green places, in which life and the perception of what happens in them is altered, without being able to do anything to avoid it.
Without wanting to play down such a serious subject, but trying to approach it with a sense of humor, which never hurts, we carried out our installation Mutant weeds in which we recreated a not-too-distant future, in which a new and hardy species of photosensitive plant, grows in the asphalt around the pharmacies, nourished by the photosynthesis of its powerful “low” light.
To accomplish this mission, we acquired fluorescent sticks, which we gave the form of blades of grass and we placed them on the pavement, converting the reflections into small radioactive fields that produced a curious anticipation in the many citizens who walked the streets at those hours.
We chose 3 downtown locations and there we left our illuminated fields for a while, while, we talked with the curious pedestrians, after which, we picked everything up so as not to pollute.