Art About Environmental Issues

“Black machine, ” Teatro Colosseo, Torino, Italy, 2015


The immediacy of city life can make it all too easy to think of environmental woes as being the problems of faraway places. But two Switzerland-based street artists who call themselves NEVERCREW make humanity’s fraught relationship with nature impossible for urbanites to ignore.

Christian Rebecchi and Pablo Togni have been working together since meeting 20 years ago at the Liceo Artistico C.S.I.A., an art school in Lugano, Switzerland. And they’ve clearly hit their stride. NEVERCREW has introduced its skillfully executed and unique pieces, like oil-dipped polar bears and commodified whales, to walls in cities around the world, including New Delhi; Belgrade, Serbia; Munich; Hamburg, Germany; Manchester, England; and Rochester, New York. The artists recently completed their latest paintings, a two-part series of a bear and a whale trapped inside a plastic bottle, for the Vancouver Mural Festival and Denmark's WE AArt Festival.

The duo’s recent large-scale murals feature stunningly realistic mash-ups between wildlife and industrial objects. The combination forces viewers to confront themes like climate change, pollution, and the exploitation of natural resources—systems in which we all participate, however unwittingly.

onEarth provides reporting and analysis about environmental science, policy, and culture. All opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the policies or positions of NRDC. Learn more or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

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