Culture and Education

Giant Eco-Friendly Artwork at UNGA76 to Totally Amp Up World Leaders!

A new 11,000 square metre ‘ephemeral fresco’ created by Swiss artist Saype, has set the stage at UN Headquarters in New York, to welcome world leaders for the General Assembly High Level Week. It shows two children building the world of the future using origami, highlighting the participation of young people. 

“World in Progress II is perfectly suited to our time and place. First, it is, in all senses, a big picture.  Both its execution and its subject are monumental and ambitious.  We have to take several steps back, just to view it in its entirety.  Then we understand that it shows two children, designing their ideal world together”, said on Saturday UN Secretary General during the unveiling ceremony.

Antonio Guterres explained that, just like the artwork, the United Nations’ mission extends far beyond what we can see around us. “Most of it lies out of our view. Our work is multilateral, and multi-generational. And each of us plays an essential part in creating the whole”, he added.

Valentin Flauraud for Saype

The giant fresco made by artist Saype represents peace and youth participation.

Earth-friendly art

Guillaume Legros, or “Saype”, an artist name inspired by the contraction of the words “say” and “peace”, is famous for its invention of an eco-friendly painting process. His special technique allows him to create huge frescoes directly on the grass.

“In two weeks, there will be nothing left due to the regrowth of the grass. This makes the work disappear, even more than the rain”, he explained to UN News, adding that he spent more than a year finding the right pigments for his ephemeral art.

Saype had already shared one of his creations at UN premises before. Last year, World in Progress I was unveiled during the commemoration of the UN’s 75th anniversary in Geneva, Switzerland.

“In the centre, there is a dove that symbolizes peace. The basic idea is that on the one hand when talking about children, we ask ourselves what responsibility we have towards them. But, on the other hand, they are the ones who will have the world of tomorrow in their hands. This means that we must really learn to live together in a world that is also hyper-connected”, he said.

Valentin Flauraud for Saype

Swiss-French artist Saype (Guillaume Legros) poses in his giant ephemeral landart painting.

A call to world leaders

For the UN chief, the children depicted in World in Progress II are designing our shared future. 

“This year’s General Debate will take up this theme, focusing on the world we are building together. My recent report on Our Common Agenda recommends new ways for today’s decision-makers to better serve both young people, and future generations”.

Mr. Guterres said he was hopeful that world leaders will take inspiration from Saype’s art to consider how “we can look beyond our immediate surroundings, while respecting nature and our planet”.

Giant eco-friendly artwork unveiled at United Nations



  1. “The vibrant and captivating artwork created by Saype is a true testament to the power of youth involvement in shaping a better future. The message of peace and collaboration resonates strongly, reminding us all of our shared responsibility to build a more sustainable world together.”

  2. Wow, this artwork sounds amazing! But I’m curious, how long did it take for the artist to complete it?

    1. Hey AliceWinslet32, the creation of the Giant Eco-Friendly Artwork at UNGA76 by Saype took approximately three weeks to complete. It’s truly a remarkable piece of art that symbolizes the collective effort of building a better world for the future!

  3. “The world is certainly in need of more meaningful and impressive art installations like this. It’s inspiring to see the power of art being utilized to convey important messages, especially when it comes to highlighting the role of young people in shaping our future.”

  4. The giant fresco made by artist Saype represents peace and youth participation. It truly captures the essence of our time, showcasing the importance of young people in shaping the future. The artwork is not merely a visual spectacle but a powerful message of unity and hope for a better world.

  5. Is the artwork supposed to symbolize the importance of youth involvement in global issues?

    1. Yes, BeatriceJohnson! The artwork indeed symbolizes the significance of youth participation in addressing global challenges. It serves as a powerful reminder that young people play a crucial role in shaping the future world we all share.

  6. Does the artwork by Saype symbolize a call for action from world leaders to prioritize youth involvement in shaping the future?

    1. Yes, the artwork by Saype indeed symbolizes a call for action from world leaders to prioritize youth involvement in shaping the future. The image of two children building the world of the future using origami represents the importance of young people in creating a better world. It serves as a powerful reminder that the voices and ideas of the youth must be heard and considered in decision-making processes at all levels. Through this artwork, Saype highlights the significance of fostering youth participation and collective efforts towards a more sustainable and inclusive future.

  7. “The artwork is truly awe-inspiring and sends a powerful message about the importance of youth engagement in creating a better future. It’s remarkable how art can transcend boundaries and unite people in a common vision.”

  8. “The artwork is truly inspiring and impactful. It beautifully captures the essence of youth involvement in shaping a better future. I believe it sends a powerful message to world leaders to prioritize sustainability and collaboration for a brighter tomorrow.”

  9. Do you think this giant artwork will have a lasting impact on the world leaders attending UNGA76?

  10. “I absolutely love the message behind this artwork! It’s a beautiful representation of unity and hope for the future. I hope world leaders take inspiration from it and work towards a better world for all.”

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