A photo of Somerset House courtyard at twilight, with fountains on.

The 50th Anniversary of Earth Day at Somerset House

22 Apr 2020

To mark the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, join us as we celebrate with a range of free interactive events online, exploring how art and culture can inspire positive action in relation to the current ecological crisis.

Celebrated on 22 April every year since 1970, and now known as the planet’s largest civic event, this year’s theme for the 50th edition of Earth Day is ‘Climate Action.’ We will be hosting a series of free creative online workshops, sessions, and live interviews for the world to enjoy, from Wednesday 22 April – Wednesday 20 May 2020.

The events team is championing the theme by further developing the venue’s commitment to event sustainability and creating a handbook for organisers, specific to Somerset House.  It will include tips on how to make your event more sustainable and the questions you should be asking your suppliers to minimise the carbon footprint of your event. To be one of the first to receive a copy as soon as this is released, please contact our team on events@somersethouse.org.uk.

For both 2018 and 2019, Somerset House achieved a 4-star rating at the Creative Green Awards. Last year we generated 56% of our own electricity, installed 5 water fountains across the site and reduced deliveries by 12%. 

Earth Day season kicks off on 22 April with acclaimed men’s British fashion designer Bethany Williams’ DIY flag making workshop - where viewers will learn print making and embroidery techniques - and enjoy a live interview with Williams and Somerset House’s curator Karishma Rafferty at midday. 

Williams’ programme is entitled ‘All Our Children’ and encourages audiences to get creative with fabrics and clothes they can find at home. It asks audiences to consider how they might transform society’s relationship with the planet to protect it for future generations, using the flag as a platform for sharing their wishes.

Thursday 23 April sees a Mindful Mushrooms workshop inviting families to discover the art of collage with Seana Gavin and Friday brings a Grow Your Own Mushrooms workshop with resident mycologist Darren Springer. On Saturday there will be a series of talks and workshops from Fashion Open Studio and Somerset House. Join from 14.00 for a talk with Bethany Williams and knitwear designer Katie Jones, led by journalist Tamsin Blanchard.

The full intinerary can be found here