France had other plans, however. When walking home from work last Friday, instead of a big empty space I discovered giant, green, grass-like plastic pieces.
Photo of l'oeure by Vincent Leroy taken by FBF
It turns out that this art was part of an event called “l’art en la matière” taking place all over France in celebration of the International Year of Chemistry, complete with a green chemistry conference in little old Lille. As luck would have it, FBF is a science nerd, and was recruited by his chemistry professors to work the event.
The art installation was indeed supposed to look like grass, and was installed in such a way that it would move with the wind. But even more than that, it was created with a type of plastic that emits more light than it takes in, sort of imitating photosynthesis. Going with the celebration of green chemistry, this type of plastic would allow us to emit a lot less electricity if used for light up signs (I’m thinking those bright green pharmacy crosses that are all over France).
There were other art displays in Lyon, Marseille, and Paris, each focusing on a different area of importance for green chemistry.