The “Unsustainable Attainment” of The Great Pacific Garbage Patch


As Virginia Yount’s exhibit “Unsustainable Attainment” comes down next week at the gallery, I thought we should bring a bit of last-call attention to some of the broader sociological and ecological implications of her work. Yount’s one sculptural piece in the show, “Throw Cash into the Wind,” precariously places tiny architectural structures atop a floating trash island “supported” by the buoyancy of plastic bottles. This directly recalls the several successfully completed missions to sail across the Pacific Ocean on crafts supported solely by these ubiquitous little buggers, in attempts to bring attention and awareness to what has been deemed the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.

For those of you not in the know, the GPGP is estimated to be roughly the size of Texas (some estimates are much larger) and is said to contain at least one million tons of tiny, bite-sized pieces of non-biodegradable (ever!) plastic. Gross. All of this lovely waste is being graciously pulled away from the Asian and North American coasts by a kindly and gigantic gyre in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, and luckily enough for us land dwellers, it won’t be going anywhere anytime soon. For more information about the most recent voyage, visit the New York Times blog, and for more information about the patch itself and one it’s founding discoverers, check out this great lecture.

If you’re into trash-facts, the wastefulness of consumer societies, the obsession with hoarding (not to mention the obsession with watching television about hoarders), and people and their stuff in general, as much as I am, please come see Yount’s show before it closes next week on November 12, 2010. And then recycle something…fast!

 

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About Women and Their Work Gallery

Known for its pioneering spirit, embrace of artistic innovation, and commitment to Texas audiences and artists, Women & Their Work Art Space is a one of a kind statewide non-profit organization. Voted “Best Gallery” numerous times in the Austin Chronicle Readers Poll, Women & Their Work Gallery showcases exhibitions of contemporary art throughout the year and presents performances, readings, film screenings and educational outreach programs.
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