Home Institution

Bowdoin College

Publication Date

Spring 2022

Program Name

Portugal: Sustainability and Environmental Justice


Urban art is a novel dimension of the environmental movement. Utilizing highly trafficked areas, urban art has the potential to spread environmental messages both because of the size of the audience and because of the contrast between nature-centered art and the urban context. The paper discusses 15 environmental urban artworks in Lisbon and conducts a visual and thematic analysis. The analysis revealed five themes present in Lisbon: the power and beauty of nature, connection with nature, environmental loss and degradation, waste management, and climate change. The most prevalent theme in Lisbon was the connection with nature, followed by a tie between power and beauty of nature and environmental loss and degradation. The presence of these works revealed concerns for the impacts of urbanization on the natural environment in a multiplicity of ways. The analysis in this paper serves as a framework for how cities and artists can use the urban setting in environmental activism.


Art and Design | Civic and Community Engagement | Environmental Studies | European Languages and Societies | Graphic Communications | Place and Environment | Urban, Community and Regional Planning | Urban Studies


Article Location