Air cleaning mural with a message pops up in Katowice ahead of World Urban Forum

Air cleaning mural with a message pops up in Katowice ahead of World Urban Forum

The prestigious international event will take place in the Polish city in June 2022

A few days before Christmas, Polish artist Raspazjan adorned one of the walls of a tenement house on Kordeckiego Street (Katowice) with a mural conveying an important message. Referring to the World Urban Forum (WUF), which will take place in the Polish city in June 2022, the image shows a person living in harmony with nature, being in the centre of the ecosystem. The person is an integral part of it, and he manages to consume its resources responsibly.

However, the piece of art holds much more than a symbolic meaning. Relevant to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations, the artist has chosen to paint the mural with photocatalytic paints - so it can purify the air around it.

Visualising environmental action in Katowice

In June 2022 Katowice will become the international capital of urban development. The Silesian city will play host to the prestigious international conference, organised by UN-Habitat, devoted to the challenges facing contemporary cities and metropolises. The WUF is the most important global event concerning municipal policies in the realms of transformation and development.

Realising that important changes cannot go without changes in mindsets, the Polish city turned to a popular local artist to convey the messages of the forum in an unusual way. The result of the collaboration with Jan Michał Raspazjan could not be more appropriate - a painting with the size of a building, which transforms entirely the urban landscape and has a positive effect on the environment.

The mural was created using photocatalytic paints with technology allowing air pollutants to be attracted by titanium dioxide, one of the components of the paints. The process is activated by UV light which transforms pollutants into environmentally friendly nitrates. According to estimates, the titanium dioxide can improve air quality in the immediate vicinity of the mural for the next ten years.

The purpose of the work, as stated on the website of WUF11, is to

  • ensure sustainable and responsible consumption and production patterns;
  • combat climate change and its effects;
  • preserve marine life by protecting the oceans, seas and marine resources and using them in a sustainable way;
  • protect life on land by restoring and promoting the sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably managing forests, combating desertification, halting and reversing land degradation and halting biodiversity loss.

Jan Michał Raspazjan, is already a familiar name to the residents of the Silesian Voivodship with his works displayed in the Silesian Museum, the fence of the Silesian Zoological Garden and the wall of the Katowice Shopping Centre (Galeria Katowicka). However, the air-purifying mural at Kordeckiego Street is a first achievement for the artist.


Read also: An ecological mural reduces air pollution in Bielsko-Biała

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