Of all the environmental pollution that can be found in the city of Madrid, the most evident is light pollution, so much so that in our sky we can never see the Milky Way and hardly any stars. This overillumination is evident to the naked eye at a distance of more than 200 kms and produces a glow that can be seen with a medium-size telescope for more than 700 kms.
It is therefore very surprising, that at a time when the European Union is so careful with issues of environmental pollution, the Dept. of the Environment of the City Council of Madrid rules for illuminated signs, adopted a couple of years ago, changed the rules for pharmacy signs, to allow them to be replaced with much more powerful ones.
So much light emanates from the new crosses that the environment that surrounds each pharmacy, is permanently tinted a deep, vibrant and unnatural green color. Objectively speaking, one could say that the majority of the urban green spaces in our city, are more the result of erroneous illuminated sign rules than the commitment of our institutions to provide the city with places where you can be in contact with nature.
In addition to the obvious color change of the streets, the neighbors who live in the vicinity of 24 hour pharmacies, have watched impotently as every night their rooms become disturbing green places, in which life and the perception of what happens in them is altered, without being able to do anything to avoid it.
Without wanting to play down such a serious subject, but trying to approach it with a sense of humor, which never hurts, we carried out our installation Mutant weeds in which we recreated a not-too-distant future, in which a new and hardy species of photosensitive plant, grows in the asphalt around the pharmacies, nourished by the photosynthesis of its powerful “low” light.
To accomplish this mission, we acquired fluorescent sticks, which we gave the form of blades of grass and we placed them on the pavement, converting the reflections into small radioactive fields that produced a curious anticipation in the many citizens who walked the streets at those hours.