What would the Eiffel Tower look like after climate change?

That climate change is a reality comes as no surprise to any of us. We have all heard the facts and watched the news. But you can’t help but wonder what the future of our planet really looks like. How will cities and landscapes change and what will the world look like? French photographer and digital artist Fabien Barrau tries to help give us a visual.

In his “News from the Future” series, Barrau depicts the architectural landmarks of the world after regions have experienced desertification, tropicalization and rising sea levels. His series reinvents the Statue of Liberty submerged in water, the Eiffel Tower and the Colosseum in an arid desert and the Arc de Triomphe lying on the bottom of the ocean.

“My motivation for this series was how to influence the awareness of climate change and the urgency to act every day according to one’s means and power,” explains Barrau. “In my case, my little power is to create images and to imagine myself as an explorer who will come back from the future with photos of a changed world.”

“It is not a scientific work but an artistic work where I am inspired by the probabilities of the IPCC [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] data,” says Barrau. He uses Photoshop to digitally edit archival photos and drone shots of these monuments, to show them in a world devastated by the effects of climate change. “This series is clearly fictional and I deliberately pushed the ‘catastrophic’ slider to the maximum”, he says. “I remain convinced that a simple image can have more impact on people, especially young people, to understand the probabilities of the consequences of inaction.”

The Statue of Liberty revisited after climate change by Fabien Barrau

Photo: Fabien Barrau (Instagram/@fabienbarrau)

New York reinvented after climate change by Fabien Barrau

Photo: Fabien Barrau (Instagram/@fabienbarrau)

Teresa H. Sadler