Olimpia Velasco & Esther Pizarro Juanas // Efecto Mariposa

Olimpia Velasco & Esther Pizarro Juanas // Efecto Mariposa © Eric Danhier

Olimpia Velasco & Esther Pizarro Juanas // Efecto Mariposa


Rue de la Science 19 Wetenschapsstraat
1000 Brussels

Date of completion


1000 Brussel

Web history

“The beating of a butterfly’s wings can cause a typhoon halfway around the world”. Mathematician and meteorologist Edward Lorenz used this Chinese proverb and chaos theory to create the “butterfly effect”. According to this theory, actions seemingly dissociated from each other could lead to completely unforeseeable consequences. The chaos theory and the butterfly effect would make it possible to describe the behaviour of nature and its fragile relationship with the sustainability of finite resources in the Anthropocene era. Human actions now have serious consequences on the sustainability of our planet: global warming, desertification, pollution, depletion of resources, etc.

“The Butterfly Effect (Efecto Mariposa) is an art installation by artists Olimpia Velasco and Esther Pizarro Juanas. This work invites viewers to reflect on the fragile balance between nature and the imprint we humans leave on flora and fauna. To this end, the work focuses on three elements: the tree, the person and the butterfly. The tree symbolises the cycle of life, it is one of the great cultural symbols of humanity and the collective imagination. The tree is in a constant state of flux – it produces movement, sometimes dense, sometimes diluted, sometimes fast, sometimes slow. Its branches develop and grow physically and spiritually. The human figure, with its head stuck in the trunk, represents the synthesis of the person with his natural environment: curiosity, communion and companionship all blend together in a sustainable fashion. The butterfly alludes to transformation, change and resilience. It focuses on those small actions which together can bring about significant changes that lead to a lasting balance between man and the environment; an anthropological ecosystem strengthened by respect for nature. “Butterfly Effect” is a mural that has been specially designed for the internal courtyard of the Spanish Embassy in Brussels (Belgium); the butterfly wings embody the urban fabric of downtown Brussels.

Visits to the Embassy from Monday to Friday from 9.00 to 17.00 by appointment at the following address emb.bruselas.ofc@maec.es