China’s Foot-Painted Tree Crossings

Sunday, September 23, 2012
A simple crosswalk in Shanghai was turned into a piece of eco-conscious artwork

Jody Xiong of DDB China in conjunction with the China Environmental Protection Foundation created this wonderful outdoor campaign to create a subtle visual reminder of the environmental benefits of walking versus driving. Enormous white canvases with a bare tree were placed across 132 crosswalks in 15 Chinese cities.

As pedestrians crossed their shoe soles were imprinted with a small amount of green paint, leaving behind a trail of leaf-like footprints.
As a result, every step (literally) made the tree go greener.

An estimated 3.92 million people “greened” these pedestrian crossings. China is swiftly motorizing, with an estimated 78 million cars, but it can avoid the fate of auto-oriented industrialized countries by keeping shoes on the ground and off the pedal. The millions of little painted leaves adorning these elegant banners may not photosynthesize the carbon dioxide out of China’s air, but they can highlight the need for reducing China’s carbon footprint, one green painted footprint at a time.

After the campaign, the print was exhibited at the Shanghai Zheng Da Art Museum. Check out the video below to see how it all went down.


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