This Designer Depicts a Post-Pandemic World with Vehicles Transformed Into Planters

published Jan 19, 2021
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Credit: Nicolas Abdelkader

The ongoing pandemic has changed our lives in so many ways, and as many hope for and imagine what the world will look like post-pandemic, French designer Nicolas Abdelkader has created a collection of photos depicting his vision.

“The Urgency to Slow Down” is a series of digitally edited images by Abdelkader where fuel-burning vehicles like planes, huge container ships, trucks, tanks, and sports cars are transformed into planters packed with trees, flowers, and other lush greenery. Turning these pollution-creating machines representing our fast-paced, consumption-fueled world into something that benefits the environment — one of the most pressing issues of our time — is powerful and profound.

Credit: Nicolas Abdelkader

Abdelkader told CNN that the images, which he created while confined in his home in Paris, are a plea to slow down energy consumption. He hopes that the photo series will help people reflect on the type of world they want to return to after the pandemic.

Abdelkader also discussed his project with designboom, explaining that he thought COVID-19 would allow us to see a new kind of world. “However, in view of the planes in the sky at the time of writing, the number of engines covering the song of birds, the sending of rockets into space, and the governmental recommendations of these last days across the planet (particularly in France), one can affirm that the frenetic rhythm of yesterday is ‘naturally’ reclaiming its place to the detriment of biodiversity and our health.”

Credit: Nicolas Abdelkader

The designer fantasized about “a more reasonable, calmer, and more harmonious world” and created these images to question our relationship with mobility, especially as it wreaks havoc on our natural world. 

Abdelkader recently founded a company called Superfarm, with the goal of combining architecture, agriculture, and agronomy to reintroduce greenery to urban spaces, CNN detailed; a way to bring elements of his photo series to life.

“[If we can] take the initiative to send rockets into the stratosphere with billions of dollars, which is really not the most urgent activity for humans, we can completely modify the role of our vehicles to make beautiful planters!” he told CNN.