Museo del Prado digitally alters masterpieces to show the effects of climate change
Madrid’s Prado museum collaborates on this project with the World Wildlife Fund
The concern over climate change doesn’t seem to affect everybody. To truly illustrate what is involved, Prado (Museo del Prado), one of the most renowned museums in the world (located in Madrid, Spain), has decided to digitally alter some of its most prized artistic works.
As Open Culture (OC) reports, the museum cooperated on this project with World Wildlife Fund preparing it for the recent Madrid Climate Change Conference. The paintings were altered based on the report of the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, titled IPCC’s 2018 Special Report: Global Warming of 1.5°C. The altered paintings were placed on giant billboards in Madrid during the conference, and are still on display there.
The project involved modern artists who did the digital alterations of four of Prado’s masterpieces. Artist Julio Falagan brings extreme drought to bear on El Paso de la Laguna Estigia(Charon Crossing the Styx) by Joachim Patinir, 1520 – 1524. Marta Zafra raises the sea level on Felipe IV a Caballo (Philip the IV on Horseback) by Velázquez, circa 1635. The Parasol that supplies the title for Francisco de Goya’s El Quitasol of 1777 becomes a tattered umbrella barely sheltering miserable, crowded refugees in the sodden, makeshift camp of Pedro Veloso’s reimagining. Lastly, the Niños en la Playa captured relaxing on the beach in 1909 by Joaquín Sorolla now competing for space with dead fish, as observed by artist Conspiracy 110 years further along.