• Overview


  1. The Europe Office of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is offering the chance for talented and creative artists to put their art at the service of the environment and showcase their work to an international audience.


  1. Comic strip artists, designers, photographers and all other artists, both professional and amateur, are invited to submit work that celebrates the natural environment in UN member states in the broader European region*, highlights the challenges it faces or the possible solutions, or calls for embracing sustainability.


  1. There are three categories: poster design, comic strip and photography. One winner will be selected for each category, who will receive a special prize (see item 7). The winner and the second and third runners-up in each category will receive a certificate from the UNEP Europe Office.


  1. The authors of all the submitted artworks will withhold the rights to their work. By submitting their artworks, authors grant UNEP the right to use the submitted artworks for non-commercial purposes, always crediting the authors. Any commercial use will require the agreement of the author.


  1. A wider selection of artworks from the three categories will be showcased (at least) on the regional social media accounts (Twitter and Facebook) of the UNEP Europe Office, giving credit to the authors.  


  1. The selected artworks will be labelled and displayed at the European headquarters of UNEP, giving credit to the authors. The Europe Office hosts regular visits from government representatives, United Nations officials, experts, student groups and other stakeholders.


  1. One competition winner per category will have his or her expenses covered to travel from their country of residence within the broader European region* to Geneva, Switzerland, via the most environmentally-friendly feasible route. The winners selected by the jury will be contacted to agree on a date for their visit in 2020. In addition to their travel expenses, they will receive a stipend that will comfortably cover the cost of a two-night stay in the city (including the cost of meals, transport, etc.). They will visit the UNEP Europe Office, at the International Environment House, where their artwork will be displayed, meet the staff and learn about our work. They will also visit the UN Headquarters in Geneva at the Palais des Nations.


  1. The competition is open to artists based in the broader European region*. Entrants must be at least 18 years old. Artists based in other regions are allowed to participate, but are not eligible for the travel prizes, nor the mentioned certificates to the top three entries per category. A special mention, in the shape of social media promotion and a different certificate, may be made to the best artwork by an artist based outside the broader European region covered by our office. **


  1. The artists must be the authors and copyright owners of the artworks submitted in their name.


  1. The artwork will be selected according to:
  • The degree to which the art conveys Europe’s natural treasures, the challenges faced by our environment, the possible solutions, or the need to embrace sustainability.
  • The artwork’s overall visual impact, creativity and originality.
  • Compliance with the technical requirements and recommendations.


  1. Entries must be submitted through an online link (one drive, wetransfer, google drive, etc.) to [email protected], [email protected] and [email protected] and will be accepted until midnight CET on 24 November 2019.


  1. Apart from the artwork file/s, the online link will include a Word or Pdf document per artwork with the complete name of the author, his or her nationality, country and city where they reside (within the broader European region*), the title of the artwork, and a caption or brief description (not more than 100 words) of the content of the artwork, its meaning or purpose.


  1. All entries must be submitted as high-resolution, print-quality digital files, in vertical or horizontal layout.


  1. Files for the photography competition must be submitted in jpeg format and aim to have a minimum of 6000 pixels on one side. In any case, whether or not your file meets this threshold, we strongly encourage you to provide it in the highest possible size and resolution***. UNEP holds the right to make size adjustments when printing out the artwork, although it will always try to avoid it. It is encouraged not to include any substantive elements within one cm from each edge, in case it is cut off when being printed.


  1. Files for the design and comic strip competitions must be submitted in pdf or jpeg format and have a resolution of 300 dpi. They must have a size of 101x71 cm and not include any substantive elements within one cm from each edge, in case it is cut off when printed.


  1. Each candidate can submit a maximum of 10 separate entries per category.


  1. In the case of the comic strip entries, there is no limit to the number of comic frames or panels, or the way in which they are displayed on the 101x71cm artwork.


  1. The artwork may contain text (although it is not necessary) but must not contain logos, commercial material or people’s names, and must respect UN values. It shall not include any watermark, the author’s signature or the title of the artwork.


  1. If the artwork features the face of a real person, the author must provide (in the mentioned link) a signed document proving that the portrayed person has authorised the use of his or her image for non-commercial purposes.


  1. UN staff members, consultants and interns are welcome to take part in the competition but will not be eligible for the travel prizes. In that case, they could still receive the certificate as winner in the category, and their work would be promoted, but the travel prize would be handed over to the next best selected artist.


  1. UNEP withholds the right not to select a winner for each category (although strongly hopes to select them).

* All European Union member states, in addition to Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Georgia, Iceland, Israel, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Montenegro, Norway, Republic of Moldova, Russian Federation, San Marino, Serbia, Switzerland, Tajikistan, North Macedonia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan.

** The possibility for artists based in other regions to participate, while still not eligible for travel prizes, was added to these terms of reference on 30/10/2019.

***The terms of reference were amended on 04.11.2019. They previously required artwork to have a minimum of 6000 pixels on one side.