ABU DHABI -- The Green Zone at COP28 UAE promises to be a vibrant hub, featuring the first-ever sustainable fashion show at COP, inspiring art installations, performances, theatrical shows and more from 3-12 December.
These experiences are designed and curated to educate, involve, and empower climate innovators as well as those curious about becoming climate actionists in their daily lives.
Visitors to the Green Zone, a space managed and delivered by the COP28 Presidency, can look forward to discovering a wide range of arts and cultural activities. Here’s a sneak peek of what awaits you.
1. Tree of Life: Inspiring Sustainability and Stability
In the Green Zone's Energy Hub, you'll discover the Tree of Life, a world-first artificial intelligence (AI) interactive digital art installation and a contemporary symbol of environmental sustainability. Taking inspiration from the resilient Ghaf tree, native to the UAE and renowned for thriving in harsh conditions, this installation fuses art with AI. The Tree of Life invites visitors to understand COP28's key themes and make personal commitments to environmental sustainability.
2. One World One Humanity: Celebrating a Collective Future
Members of the public can enjoy this immersive theatrical show. There will be two shows daily and three on weekends. This show will embody the spirit of COP28's message: UNITE. ACT. DELIVER. Larger-than-life characters will lead a narrative celebrating our interconnected world, fostering unity and inspiration towards a more sustainable and equitable future.
3. Sustainable Fashion Show: Redefining the Fashion Industry
For one evening only on 6 December, Al Wasl Plaza will be transformed into a fashion runway, welcoming some of the industry's most prominent names. Notable fashion houses will unveil sustainable collections. It will become the first-ever fashion show at COP and will offer a platform to both established and emerging designers deeply committed to the causes of climate change and sustainability.
4. Future of Nature Concert by Alessandro Martire: Harmonizing with Nature
Renowned Italian maestro Alessandro Martire will enchant audiences with a piano concert, connecting his listeners to the serene elements of nature. Alessandro, known as ‘the artist of nature,’ has performed at some of the world's most iconic natural locations. The concert will take place at Al Wasl Plaza on 4 December and the event will be presented by the Polyseum Foundation, a London-based charity supporting Fine Arts education.
5. United for Climate Change
'United for Climate' revolves around the unification of the seven emirates of the United Arab Emirates through the medium of art. This initiative aims to harness the power of artistic expression to emphasize the collective commitment of the nation to climate action. By uniting the emirates through creative collaboration, the project conveys a strong message of unity, resilience, and shared responsibility in addressing the pressing challenges of climate change.
Through this artistic endeavor, the UAE underscores its dedication to making a positive impact on a global scale, resonating with the theme of COP28 and contributing to the broader dialogue on sustainable practices and environmental stewardship.
6. The Wake Up Experience by Impact Nest
Impact Nest will present a breathtaking immersive session that will give us a glimpse into the future and a deep dive within ourselves. This experience will be enriched by the wisdom of the visionary yogi Sadhguru and the visual storytelling of the award-winning MP-STUDIO on the spectacular Al Wasl Dome. Are we ready to face the future of our planet? Are we enough to change it? Impact Nest will present both the stark climate horizon and potential solutions to what could become the most catastrophic mass migration wave in human history.
7. Koli Fishermen of Bombay: Guardians of Cultural Sustainability Dance Performance
Avid Learning, the philanthropic arm of the Essar Group will present a vibrant musical, celebrating the Kolis, the indigenous inhabitants of Bombay, and their profound connection with the sea. Set against the picturesque backdrop of Mumbai's coastline, the unique performance will pay a heartfelt tribute to the rich Koli culture and heritage. It will also highlight their resilience in the face of the most urgent challenges like climate change, industrialization, and overfishing, while demonstrating their commitment to marine conservation. The production will be led by Parag Tandel, artist and visual auto-ethnographer of Koli Community, Yuki Ellias, actor and theatre and film producer, and Tej Arun Chandiwale, the choreographer.
8. Bright Light Burning Theatre Performance: We are the Possible by University of Exeter
Bright Light Burning is a theatrical journey that merges artistry, storytelling, and environmental activism inspired by the University of Exeter Green Futures We Are the Possible: 12 Poems for 12 Days of COP28 anthology, funded by the British Embassy UAE.
Developed by The Theatre of Others, the production aims to shift perspectives, evoke empathy, and galvanize audiences to take meaningful steps towards a sustainable future. Bright Light Burning takes us into the future and tells us the story of a family in 2100. In the story, the world has changed, but human need has not. It shows how people in the future look after each other. It also talks about the choices people make now and how they affect the future.
9. Emirati Arts Culture by Al Ghadeer
Emirati Arts Culture by Al Ghadeer aims to help local artisans build a more stable economy. They will provide tools, training, and ways to sell their products. Al Ghadeer—meaning a small stream that helps things grow in Arabic—wants to support traditional crafts to help our community grow. Through Sadu, Khous, Telli and Pottery, among other crafts, the space will bring together traditional practices with contemporary designs that celebrate Emirati heritage.
10. Swarm – Art Installation Co-Creation Activity
This artwork, made by artist Leonie Bradley, will showcase bees using origami fortune tellers made by children. It will be an interactive exhibit where people can explore and add to a growing artwork. It will be a celebration linked to the launch of a coalition, emphasizing the vital role of beekeeping in our environment.
The Swarm will encourage COP28 delegates to join in by writing their nature pledges, folding the fortune teller, and becoming part of the collective artwork. Come and ‘Bee The Change’ with at BeeTheChange.org.
11. Data Portal – Nature by Refik Anadol
Data Portal: Nature is a dynamic AI Data Sculpture created by Refik Anadol Studio. This transformative installation will turn the interior dome of the Al Wasl Plaza into a beacon of hope and inspiration. The artwork is based on a meticulously collected dataset of more than 400 million publicly available visuals of water, coral, and flora. It will unfold in four chapters (Chapter 1: Fluid Dreams, Chapter 2: Coral Dreams, Chapter 3: Floral Pigmentations, Chapter 4: Generative Flowers). Each chapter represents a facet of nature's beauty, serving as both a stark reminder of the fragility of our ecosystem and an invitation for visitors to engage in a dialogue about the urgent need for environmental preservation. This exhibit stands as a beautiful yet cautionary reminder, epitomizing nature's beauty while emphasizing the danger of relegating its existence to mere digital memories.