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Bristol to host acclaimed travelling photography exhibition

Part of the WHOLE EARTH? exhibition on Woodland Road.

A young boy poses in front of illegally logged timber in Nigeria. The wood is destined for Europe. Local communities receive no income to compensate for the loss of forest around their villages. Mark Edwards/Hard Rain Picture Library

Girls in pretty yellow dresses in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, which was hit by an earthquake in 2010. Mark Edwards/Hard Rain Picture Library

Press release issued: 1 October 2015

An acclaimed photography exhibition, addressing the world’s most pressing issues, will be displayed in Bristol before travelling around the world. The University of Bristol is one of 20 universities in the world to host the launch of WHOLE EARTH?, a series of striking images and facts aimed at raising the profile of sustainable development and the environment.

It's the sequel to the critically-acclaimed Hard Rain project, which was viewed by over 15 million people in galleries and public spaces worldwide, and even went on show at the UN headquarters in New York.

WHOLE EARTH?, run in partnership with the National Union of Students (NUS), calls upon students and universities to help solve some of the world’s biggest problems, from poverty to global warming, refugees to overpopulation.

The exhibition is free and open to the public and the local community is invited to view the display on campus, from 1 to 31 October.

From Bristol it will be shipped to the University of the Seychelles as part of a wider global rollout.

A total of 100 universities around the world will host the exhibition over the next year as it travels around the world, reaching over a million students in a wide variety of locations - from botanic gardens to slum communities.

Venues will be connected via a YouTube channel so that communication can take place across campuses and continents. Responses, opinions and comments about WHOLE EARTH? can be uploaded via YouTube or by tweeting #studentearth.

Chris Wilmore, who is leading the project at the University of Bristol, said: "It's fantastic to be chosen as one of only a handful of universities around the world to host the launch of this compelling exhibition. Given that Bristol is European Green Capital 2015, there no better time to consider our place in the world and what we can do to make it a better place."

The exhibition, which totals 60 meters, forms a trail across six publicly accessible sites at the University, posing challenges and questions for students to see whether their own research and ideas can help alleviate problems.

The idea is that whatever the area of study - from engineering to fashion, from science to finance - there is a place for everyone to contribute to the debate and bring about solutions and action on these critical issues in the context of their own studies or research.

Sarah Redrup, Student Living Officer at Bristol SU, said: "The exhibition is based on the premise that students and universities can help to lead society towards a more sustainable future. It's really thought-provoking and reminds us, for example, that a billion people can’t get enough safe drinking water and that half of all the material that has ever been used in human history has been used in the past 50 years.

"Despite the bleak picture, we're more knowledgeable than ever and the exhibition encourages us to harness this knowledge to achieve positive change to help sustain the world we live in."

Further information

Get involved:

The six locations for the exhibition are shown on this map. They include Woodland Road, Priory Road and University Walk. All are publicly accessible.

To share your views, tweet using the #studentearth hashtag or email via the Hard Rain website. Follow @wholeearthbris to find out more about the Bristol exhibition. 

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