Canada is experiencing the extreme effects of climate change across the country, with heatwaves, fires, and floods impacting communities and threatening ecosystems and wildlife already in a state of crisis.
Populations of species in Canada assessed as at risk nationally by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada have declined by 59%, on average, from 1970–2016. The urgency around this issue is what prompted world-renowned street artist birdO to partner with WWF-Canada to support conservation actions that will help safeguard wildlife, rebuild nature, and reduce climate impacts in the future.
birdO is a multidisciplinary artist based in Toronto whose art has been featured at Miami’s Art Basel. While his surreal geometric animals can be found on canvas, in digital print, and installations, birdO is primarily known for his large-scale mural work on walls and buildings around the world that depict wildlife and rare animals in their natural habitat.
A love for wildlife art started in his hometown of Saskatoon where he was painting graffiti on prairie freight trains. Now, an international muralist, birdO paints large-scale animal hybrid murals that splash onto concrete, alleyways, hotel walls, and rooftops. Another part of birdO’s allure is his anonymity—choosing to wear a hawk mask to hide his identity and let his work speak for itself. birdO’s art has gained an international presence with walls painted in Detroit, Los Angeles, Nicaragua, Miami and Mexico City.
birdO has spent the last 10 years bringing nature to the most unlikely places, in his larger-than-life wildlife murals that can be spotted across Canada. He’s now bringing his talents to WWF-Canada’s Wildest Ride Contest, the grand prize for which is an electric vehicle that birdO will make one-of-a-kind by painting a custom piece of wildlife-inspired artwork on the roof of the car. The grand prize winner will get to work with birdO to create the unique design. All proceeds from WWF-Canada’s Wildest Ride Contest directly support projects across Canada that are restoring habitat, combating climate change and conserving a growing number of species at risk.
“I’m not only inspired by Earth’s creatures as subject matter, but I’m also driven by a kinder, gentler, and more sustainable planet. WWF-Canada has always been a cause close to my heart, so it was a natural fit to partner with WWF-Canada whose mission is to preserve Canada’s wildlife as mine is to paint all types of animals.”– birdO
About World Wildlife Fund Canada
WWF-Canada creates solutions to the environmental challenges that matter most for Canadians. WWF works in places that are unique and ecologically important, so that nature, wildlife and people thrive together. Because we are all wildlife. For more information, visit WWF.ca.