1,000 garden gnomes descend on Eden for art installation

November 25, 2012
Author: Hannah

So why has a sea of 1,000 white gnomes appeared in the middle of the Eden Project?

Garden gnomes in the dark at the Eden Project

They call themselves the Keepers of the Ice, and they’ve come here to help show visitors how climate change is affecting Arctic ice.

Laid out in the form of a map of the Arctic region, some of them will disappear each week over a six-week period – to represent Arctic ice melt.

A key cooling system for the planet, Arctic sea ice has declined by more than a third over the for summer Arctic sea ice.

Arctic sea ice

Get involved

The good news is that, every weekend, visitors have the chance to get involved in the art installation and pledge to do something to reverse the melt. There’ll be the chance to take home a gnome in return for your pledge – simply have a chat with one of the volunteers manning the Arctic Gnome.

Family wrapped up warm at Eden, holding an Arctic GnomeFor example, you could pledge to turn off unneeded lights, to put a jumper on to warm yourself up rather than reaching for the thermostat, or to jump on your bike for short journeys instead of driving.

The gnomes told us: ‘We want to protect this special garden… Join us as we celebrate the ice and what it means to us all. You may even be able to take one of us home!’

If you can’t make it to Eden to see the art installation you can still take part online, uploading a photo of yourself with a garden gnome to the Arctic Gnome’s Facebook page or the Arctic Gnome website, or simply follow the Arctic Gnome on Twitter.

About the installation

The Arctic Gnome is part of our Slow Art Programme – a collection of long-term public engagement art projects commissioned to respond to Eden’s unique site.

The installation has been conceived by media agency Bullet Creative, and the original Arctic Gnome figurine, depicted sitting on top of a Biome, was designed by Eden’s very own designer-maker Elly Voisin – before being cast in clay 1,000 times!

See a time lapse video of the gnomes being installed.

Visit the Arctic Gnome exhibition

You can visit the installation, just near the ice rink, every day during Eden open hours – up to and including Sunday 6 January 2012. You can make an environmental pledge – with the chance of taking home a gnome – when the exhibition is manned, between 2.30 and 6pm each Saturday and Sunday.

Art, Climate change

5 responses to 1,000 garden gnomes descend on Eden for art installation

  1. Paul Moore says:

    Great Idea , I run The Gnome Sanctury on face book , and Live in THE last Homely House in The Galilee , which is an eco friendly place .. I would love a Gnome .. to help spread the word. http://ukulelesforpeace.com/ http://paulmooremusic.com/
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  2. Ali Braybrooks says:

    Brilliant....love anything creative that gets us all thinking and doing something about climate change!

  3. Sue Denham says:

    I am a head teacher of 2 primary schools in North Devon. I would love one of the gnomes to show the pupils the effects of climate change on icebergs. We would use him in assembly and with our Eco Warriors a to make personal and school pledges.
    The gnome would be very well looked after and loved (I'm sure he/ she would be named) and become part of school life, with a display dedicated to his/ her cause.
    This is a great, very visual art/Eco idea. We love it!!

  4. Nikki Winch says:

    I am a Foundation Stage Teacher at a local school. We would love to have a gnome. We are learning all about the weather and it's effects this term. The Arctic gnome would help the children understand the effects of climate change. I believe that children are never too young to learn these important messages.

  5. Hannah says:

    Nikki and Sue, are you able to come along to pick one up between 2.30 and 6 on today or Sunday? If not, let us know and we'll see if we can save one for you.

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