STUDIO BONN. Discourse in the Bundeskunsthalle

Global Nerve Systems

Thursday, 20 October, 7 p.m.
live in the Forum

Zita Sebesvari, Deputy Director of the Institute for Environment and Human Security at the United Nations University, Bonn
Pali Palavathanan, co-founder and Creative Director of the branding and digital agency TEMPLO, London
Grace Ndiritu, artist, London
Chair: Kolja Reichert

What does the elephant migration in southern China have to do with the famine in Madagascar? How are the forest fires in Europe connected with the floods in Lagos?

Zita Sebesvari, a climate researcher based in Bonn, describes how, as a result of climate change, one catastrophe triggers another – and which screws need to be turned to alleviate them. Sebesvari is lead author of the annual ‘Interconnected Disaster Risks’ report of the Institute for Environment and Human Security at the United Nations University in Bonn (UNU-EHS). The report is being picked up by media around the world, not least of all because of its unusual design by the London-based agency TEMPLO. Together with Sebesvari, TEMPLO’s Creative Director and Pali Palavathanan explains how the challenges of climate change can be presented in a way that makes solutions visible. Sebesvari and Palavathanan share their global view with the artist Grace Ndiritu, who incorporates diverse Indigenous economies and knowledge systems into her work. ‘Museums are dying’, argues Ndiritu, who seeks to heal the relationship with the planet through shamanistic performances.

‘How World Wide Disasters Are Interconnected’ is the start of the new STUDIO BONN series ‘GLOBAL NERVE SYSTEMS’. Here, scientists, artists, and public officials discuss which senses we need to sharpen and which new narratives and world views are necessary in order to face coming disasters.

The renowned environmental researcher Zita Sebesvari is Deputy Director of the Institute for Environment and Human Security at the United Nations University in Bonn and one of the three main authors of the ‘Interconnected Disaster Risks’ report. More

Pali Palavathanan co-founded TEMPLO together with Anoushka Rodda in 2013. The London-based branding and digital agency is committed to their ethos  ‘Creativity for Change’. In addition to the United Nations, TEMPLO’s clients include Greenpeace, Migrant Help, and Amnesty International. More

The work of Grace Ndiritu is represented in numerous collections. Her installation, ‘The Twin Tapestries’, is on view in the exhibition ‘YOYI! Care, Repair, Heal’ at the Gropius Bau in Berlin through 15 January 2023. Her second book, ‘Being Together: A Manual for Living’, was published in September 2022. More

For more on this topic, see also the Studio Bonn think tank ‘Contracts for Earth’ on the crisis of climate diplomacy and the benefits of Indigenous technologies.

The talk will be in English. A video with subtitles will be available at a later date at

A cooperation with the United Nations University.

Abb. © UNU-EHS, 2022