Credit: Jordan Hunter

Live art installation compares COP26 to Squid Game

A performative protest organised by Glasgow Actions Team in conjunction with Green New Deal Rising, has world leaders playing life or death games for the fate of the planet.

With the real world leader gathering on the opposite side of the Clyde, a group of protesters dressed as them played children’s games and called their actions childish. Inspired by the South Korean Netflix smash-hit Squid Game, world leaders were playing playground games like tug of war, hop scotch, dice, and football. All under the watchful eye of game masters representing multinational oil companies. These games, like the tv show, were adorned with a macabre sense of dread as the football they were kicking was the globe, the hopscotch cubes had options like “famine” and “floods”, and the dice made ending coal and staying at 1.5 degrees Celsius a game of luck. 

The event posed some very interesting questions as the group put out a statement in advance, with the “This is no joke and our leaders need to take it seriously. We want them to make a strong commitment to climate justice–today.”

An organizer of the protest and director of Glasgow Actions Team, Andrew Nazdin,  spoke to The Glasgow Guardian “We are calling on [world leaders], to step up to the plate. What we’ve seen thus far is wholly inadequate to keep us below 1.5 degrees celsius in terms of warming. We want our world leaders to stop playing climate games and put up real commitments that are going to be commensurate to the problem.” 

A participant, Robyn Lawrence, said she enjoyed participating as a masked world leader saying, “[It] was a fun way to make an important point. We want to do our part to raise public awareness of what’s happening here in Glasgow in an interesting and accessible way. Hopefully this action will have caught people’s attention and prompted them to engage with COP26. We need to hold our political leaders to account, and stop them from playing games with our planet’s health.” 


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