This week, I got a recommendation to watch the film Tapped. I haven’t had time this week to watch it yet, but I am going to as soon as I can. I did watch the trailer however, and it seems like a really great documentary to watch. I will watch it as soon as I can and post mid-week about it. I’m going to postpone my thoughts on the general topic of water until I watch the film and gather some deeper insight on the subject.
In the meantime, I’ll start with its container: plastic. I thought I would attempt here to use my inner artist to talk about plastic. Yesterday, I visited a gallery here in Vancouver, BC called Centre A. Centre A mainly showcases contemporary Asian art focused toward critical engagement and ideas.
There is a show on currently called i can see your underwear by two artists, Natalie Purschwitz and Kelly Lycan (see photos from the exhibition’s opening). i can see your underwear is constructed completely out of recycled plastic and other found materials that the two artists collected. The medium of plastic is a very charged item in our society today. These two installation artists have re-invented the found materials creating a very interesting interactive space, causing us to consider and think about our ideas about the material of plastic itself.
Plastic is a difficult material to discuss, because it holds several different ideologies attached to it. We either think of it as a very toxic material or it is something that can help us preserve, i.e. Tupperware or Ziploc bags. It can be detrimental to our environment, and at the same time help us save things and contain (literally) our consumption habits. Human nature causes us to be quite critical of each other, regardless of the stance that we take, which can leave us at a complete standstill.
“i can see your underwear hearkens back to schoolyard taunts, suggesting a momentary spectacle, both shameless and shameful, depending on one’s position.” This excerpt from the press release gracefully notes the consideration of the materials that were recycled to create the site-specific installation by Purschwitz and Lycan. When I read this, I thought it was a perfect way to describe how we take our own unique stand on reducing our carbon footprint and point fingers at each other while we claim to be ecologically considerate and then accidentally forget our re-useable coffee cup one morning.
Wasting the plastic is a completely different story, so let’s just consider how we use plastic and leave it at that.