Case Hilanders

Svenskt Vatten

The Crap Gallery – using Art addressing UN’s work for access to toilets and clean water.

Some people are lucky enough to have clean water, great sewer systems and live in a relative abundance of toilets. But still, in 2015, One third of the world’s population won’t have access to toilets at all.

In Sweden, we’re so well-equipped that we use toilets for numerous purposes. In fact, Swedes treat toilets like garbage cans. Every year 7 000 tons of trash ends up in our treatments plants.

In order to shed light upon these issues and raise awareness for the upcoming World Toilet Day – a UN initiative addressing the lack of toilets in the developing countries – Svenskt Vatten asked us to come up with a campaign. But toilets are not regarded as anything spectacular. So, in order to make them extraordinary – we needed art.

Art has this short-cut power to open our minds. So we initiated a collaboration between Svenskt Vatten and Young Art – an agency for young Swedish artists. Three artists were asked to portray different everyday garbage that had ended up in the treatment plants. We started an online gallery called ”Skitgalleriet” (”the Crap Gallery”) and kicked off our campaign.

The whole shebang ended in a live exhibition on the World Toilet Day where people could buy the artwork and thereby contribute to UN’s work for better access to toilets and clean water.

The project gained a lot of attention in the media and it also gave Svenskt Vatten a new way of addressing the importance of taking care of our toilets, sewer systems and natural resources.

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