Why Did Rio's Iconic Christ the Redeemer Statue Turn Green?
Dutch Firm Energy Floors Is Behind Latest Stunt Involving Brazil's Long-Suffering Icon
Nov 17, 2014
Pity Rio de Janeiro's majestic Christ the Redeemer statue, one of the city's loveliest landmarks and an irresistible target for marketers' stunts. In the latest effort, Dutch company Energy Floors turned the statue green over the weekend by installing energy-generating tiles underneath it. The energy created by the movement of people lit up the iconic statue and powered a laser beam that appeared to give it a beating heart. Tourists could also charge their smartphones to power a photo app. The project was handled by Energy Floors' Brazilian partner, EcoGreens, without an ad agency. (Shell used similar technology recently in Brazil that also involved converting kinetic energy from human movements into usable electricity. Take a look at Shell's "player-powered football pitch" in a Rio favela).
In other recent stunts, Italian broadband provider Fastweb and M&C Saatchi Milan capitalized on Brazil's humiliating World Cup defeat by Germany in July by making the Christ statue appear to abandon Rio and turn up in Naples, Italy, in a demonstration of Fastweb's speedy downloads.
And the Christ figure was lit up in black, yellow and red before the final World Cup game between Germany and Argentina following a worldwide vote on Twitter hashtag #armswideopen to determine which soccer team's colors should be displayed. Pope Francis, who is from Argentina, may not have been pleased that Twitter users picked Germany's colors to light up the religious icon.