In the days leading up to the UN COP21 Climate Conference in Paris, at the time of the French state of emergency after the Paris terror attacks, several bus stops around the city received a facelift with advertisements concerning climate change.
At first sight, the 600 large-scale posters secured behind glass look like regular commercial advertisements. But looking deeper, one can see how the seemingly innocent ads, featuring airline and automobile companies among others, speak about something very grim.
The fake corporate ads, which were designed by 82 artists from 19 countries, were a satirical protest against the corporate takeover of the climate talks at the Paris Summit.
The ads, which are a part of the Brandalism project, draw links between various companies and their contribution to issues of global warming, consumerism, and consumption of fossil fuel.
Dow Chemicals, Air France, GDF Suez (Engie), and some other corporate sponsors of the Paris Summit was referenced in the posters.
“By sponsoring the climate talks, major polluters such as Air France and GDF-Suez-Engie can promote themselves as part of the solution – when actually they are part of the problem,” said Brandalism’s Joe Elan.
The Photoshopped images are very similar to the original advertisements of the brands and thus, the difference can be easily missed. But it is this subtle difference, which when noticed, creates a bigger impact on the audience and makes them take a deeper look into the content and the issue.