Federico Massa, in art Iena Cruz, is an internationally renowned Milanese street artist who for years focused his art on themes such as environmental pollution, global warming, and endangered species. He paired with Yourban 2030, a non-profit association that uses the artistic language to launch messages on the relationship between man and nature, founded by Veronica De Angelis. Together, within the ‘Air Is Art’ participatory movement, they developed the project behind Iena Cruz’s latest work.

Hunting Pollution‘ depicts a five-story heron that hunts its prey in a severely polluted sea, however, thanks to the Airlite paint which has been used to create it, it also ‘hunts’ air pollution from one of the busiest intersections in Rome. In fact, the largest green mural in Europe covers an entire building on the corner between via del Porto Fluviale and via del Gazometro, an area already known in the city for its street artworks.

The characteristics of Airlite are truly remarkable: each square meter of wall painted with it counts as a square meter of forest and twelve square meters can absorb the harmful substances produced by a car in a day. It has been calculated that ‘Hunting Pollution‘, with its surface of one thousand square meters, will purify the air of the city, as much as thirty forest trees would. This is because the anti-pollution paint reduces the levels of nitrogen oxides emitted by cars, as well as benzene and formaldehyde. Moreover, it is active also against cigarette smoke, odors and it even eliminates antibiotic-resistant bacteria. A product that hopefully will be used more and more as a replacement of standard paint.

Ilona Catani Scarlett

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