Hoarding for Earthday
I had a dream of an avalanche of shoes, which became silkscreens, which became art. What is my unstoppable outflow? Apparently, so many incomplete canvases that I can’t open my closet door without a refrigerator dolly. Clearly, I need a Gallery.
Sick in bed the other day, I was fascinated to come upon a marathon showing of a program called “hoarders”. I saw these people’s oceans of stored debris as a fight to keep some small amount of control over beautifully engineered packaging, and manufacturing artifacts out of the landfill–Lest we believe there is an “away” that allows us to blindly use third-world children as our slaves to save a buck, and throw our sewage into life-giving waters, or believe there is an “other” that we can bomb off the face of the earth to claim our own purity. I recognized myself in these people, victims of a throw-away culture, and their struggle to come to grips with a world of disposable ingenuity! As someone who has studied packaging, I have always collected beautiful wrappings and logos, jars with interchangeable lids, cardboard boxes of certain reusable dimensions, magazine articles I hope to read someday when the world breaks down. Styrofoam cut to fit fragile, expensive electronics is such a feat of engineering I keep it stored in the box it arrived in, as if some day when I am done with it, I will be able to ship it back to the manufacturer. In fact, the box itself tells me so.
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