Disappearing Arctic gnomes help spread eco-word at Eden Project
A cluster of gleaming white garden gnomes smile knowingly as if privy to some hidden truth.
They are The Keepers of the Ice and are at The Eden Project to show visitors how climate change is affecting Arctic ice.
Initially the Arctic Gnome art installation was made up of a thousand of the little fellows all laid out in the form of a map of the Arctic region.
Over a six-week period some of their number have disappeared to represent the ice melting.
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A key cooling system for the planet, Arctic sea ice has declined by more than a third over the for summer Arctic sea ice, according to environmentalists.
Visitors to the eco-attraction, near St Austell, who have been impressed by the gnomes have been pledging to get involved to combat the problem. Some people have promised to turn off un-needed lights while others said that in future they would put a jumper on to warm themselves up rather than reaching for the thermostat.
Jumping onto a bicycle for short journeys instead of picking up the car keys was also a popular pledge.
The Arctic Gnome piece is part of the Eden Project's Slow Art Programme – a collection of long-term public engagement art projects.
The original Arctic Gnome figurine, depicted sitting on top of a Biome, was designed by Eden's own designer-maker Elly Voisin.
It was then cast in clay a thousand times to create the installation.
The remainder of the gnomes will be sitting at their spot near the ice rink until Sunday, January 6.