Salmon School at COP26
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November 1, 2021
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November 19, 2021

AMBER’s Peter Gough has been involved with Salmon School at COP26. The centre piece of Salmon School is a stunning art installation of more than 300 glass salmon by renowned artist Joseph Rossano, displayed at COP26 in recognition that the iconic wild salmon are on a path to extinction.

Salmon School directly addresses four goals of COP26:

  • Carbon Net Zero – Cold, clean water is critical for wild salmon survival and is vanishing due to rising global temperatures, pollution, deforestation and damming – all caused by humans.
  • Adapt to protect communities and natural habitat. Salmon communities have identified that large scale adaption measures are needed to help the survival of the species and themselves.
  • Finance – Significant investment is needed and the financial model needs to change to ensure funding and investment is not destroying the very environments salmon and humans need to survive.
  • Working together – The International organisations are collaborating for the first time to save our wild salmon

Salmon School is a participatory community engagement project with its origins in the Pacific Northwest of the USA and Canada. At its heart is an installation of three hundred and fifty mirrored hand-blown glass forms, suspended as if a single school of wild salmon. Rossano marshalled artists and makers from across the Pacific Northwest, and in Norway, Japan, and the UK, to craft the glass objects that make up Salmon School, forming a compelling artistic intervention at COP26. First shown at The Bellevue Arts Museum, Seattle, in 2022 it will be the centrepiece of the Museum of Glass, Tacoma’s celebration of the UN Year of Glass. Made from this endlessly recyclable material, Salmon School reminds us that art need not wastefully consume resources.