Something in the Water/Project Description
Plastic, the most prevalent component of ocean debris, threatens life on earth because it persists so long in the water. Over time, it breaks down into tinier and tinier bits that are eaten by the smallest marine life at the base of our food web. PCBs, DDT and other toxic chemicals don’t dissolve in water and the plastic actually absorbs them like a sponge. Fish that eat plankton feed mistakenly on the tiny particles that leach into the tissue of the fish. As the toxins work their way up the food change, scientists believe that some commonly found in our bloodstreams and even breast milk may have originated from this source.
See link for 11.10.09 NYT article: Afloat in the Ocean, Expanding Islands of Trash
Something in the Water is a sculptural project using plastic bags to crochet large breast-like shapes. As part of Too Shallow for Diving, I will collaborate with artists, people who do not self-identify as artists but like to crochet, and environmental groups to engage in the dual process of crocheting a reef of these shapes and raising awareness about the hazards this modern convenience has wrought.
When all the shapes are completed I will join them together into a “reef” which is intended to float at about chest height. It will hang from above (and perhaps stretch from the walls) and should be accessible for visitors to peer into and to walk around. My intent here is for the visitor to feel the implication/responsibility of seeing from the interior perspective of the breast shape as well as below and from the periphery. The scale of the finished work will be determined to some degree by the number of participants in addition to myself who are willing, able, and have time to commit to this time consuming process!