Climate Emergency: How Can Art Transform This Challenge?

Art Partner, one of the most important creative agencies in the world, announces together with UNESCO's Regional Bureau for Sciences in Latin America and the Caribbean the launch of the youth art contest #CreateCOP26, within the framework of the UN summit, which aims to raise awareness and inspire the climate debate

While the world is evolving at an astonishing pace, human actions have become a significant threat to the health of the planet. Year after year, the negative effect of climate change becomes more dangerous and visible, yet the human maelstrom continues to escalate without mitigating these devastating effects. Therefore, world leaders will meet next October 31 at the annual United Nations climate conference to try and formulate new commitments, challenges and collective transformations.

In this context, Art Partner, one of the world's largest creative agencies, together with UNESCO Montevideo Office, is calling on young artists of all nationalities, races, genders and faiths, between 14 and 30 years of age, to participate in an artistic contest to provide a creative response to Climate Change, capable of generating conversations about the urgent need to visualize effective solutions.

"Despite the fact that Latin America and the Caribbean produce only 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions, it's a region experiencing enormous changes in rainfall, rising temperatures and frequency and severity of weather-related disasters. The climate emergency is already having devastating social, economic and environmental impacts", said Lidia Brito, UNESCO's Regional Director of Science for Latin America and the Caribbean

From melting Andean glaciers and severe forest fires to destructive floods and droughts, Latin America faces climate-related development challenges that are unprecedented.

"It is essential that all nations, faith organizations and businesses come together now, on a global scale, to tackle climate change and commit to achieving carbon neutralization by 2050. Our goal is to help amplify the call to action against climate change by providing a platform where the voices of the next generation of concerned creatives can be seen and heard. Especially members of marginalized communities, who are often underrepresented and whose voices are not always heard. We look forward to seeing the work submitted," said Amber Testino, president of Art Partner.

How can art transform this reality?

From the eyes, minds and hearts of the young artists, a clear picture of the climate emergency will be revealed to all, calling for collective action to build planetary stewardship that leads to sustainable development pathways around the world. The young artists can apply with any medium, including but not limited to photography, documentary and experimental film, performance art, spoken word, musical compositions, fashion design, new media, and social networking projects. For more information and to apply, click here.

Prizes will be awarded to the most original works. Eight finalists will receive cash prizes of $10,000, $5,000 or $2,000 (£7,250, £3,375, £725). Another 20 creatives will receive honorable mentions from a world-renowned jury composed of a United Nations official and industry experts. Entries open on July 15, 2021 and close on September 10, 2021.

All finalists and honorable mentions will have their works displayed in a virtual exhibition organized by and will be featured on @artpartner's Instagram, around 350K followers. They will also have the opportunity to appear in international press and media in support of #CreateCOP26.

The panel of jurors includes: Lidia Brito, UNESCO Regional Director of the Sciences for Latin America and the Caribbean; Han Feng, Artist; Candice Marks, Senior Global Agent Art Partner; Marina Testino, Advocate for Sustainable Fashion; Ferdinando Verderi, Creative Director Vogue Italia; Matt Williams, Curator, Camden Art Centre; Shaway Yeh, Founder of Yehyehyeh and Editorial Director of Style at Modern Media Group in China.

About COP26:

The COP26 summit will bring countries together to accelerate action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. Find out more about the COP26 goals.


About Art Partner:

Art Partner is one of the world’s leading artist management agencies and full-service production companies with offices in New York, London and Paris, representing a collection of highly influential talent across the fields of photography, film, creative direction, styling, and beauty. Since 2015, Art Partner has been developing practical and creative approaches to climate action: implementing a net-zero carbon neutral policy across all three Art Partner offices, designing leading sustainable production practices and working with nonprofits, brands and industry leaders to highlight global sustainability initiatives and create comprehensive communications strategies. Earth Partner is Art Partner’s sustainability division. For more information, see the Earth Partner page.



UNESCO is the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. It seeks to build peace through international cooperation in Education, the Sciences and Culture. UNESCO's ambientals programmes, as the Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Program and the International Geoscience and Geoparks Program, contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals defined in Agenda 2030, adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2015. UNESCO has a unique role to play in strengthening the foundations of lasting peace and equitable and sustainable development by advancing cooperation in education, the sciences, culture, communication and information. Through its environmental programmes, Biosphere reserves and Global Geoparks UNESCO promotes climate action around the world.