We have to move forward
It is the way
Round and round
Together we swim
Predator and prey ,
With every turn, the hunger burns
Yes and no, light and shadow.
Reflections true, in hope’s heart they flicker
The picture is complete but the pieces too many.
Scattered like dust, they swirl and fracture
shards of progress, fire moulded to desire.
These banished goods, now cast into the darkness
Broken and twisted, come back to haunt us.
Now, we gaze upon an alien world.
Poison in our spaceship dear, attacked by the virus of fear
The monster must be overcome, it’s treasure won.
Nature’s indifference, moves with the elements
Cause and reaction say, all is fair while forever at play
And where can we find common ground?
Oh yes, once more we swim around.
Broken forms on the shoreline, Feeling compelled to be the change
To pick up litter, to do something, to see the change -that's my vision.
No reward, unless it’s in the learning, the insight, the space, the feeling, I see my hypocrisy. Feeling the weight of bag of litter, you carry the world on your shoulders. Why must I do this? IM no saviour, just a concerned individual, an artist with no idea. The feeling in picking up litter, ranges from damnation to salvation.
Plastic is really the tip of the iceberg when it comes to pollution
Its highly visible, durable, unsightly and it floats.
There are many other forms of pollution that go unnoticed.
The packaging industry gets it in the neck, so much so they have
Launched their own initiatives and cleanup programmes to counter it while still maintaining peoples massive needs for plastic in volumes such as 180 million tones per year. Recycling is business as usual; high volumes make the bucks, while the smaller pieces slip through the cracks. Post consumption sorting mechanisms are in dire need of consistency and standardisation to convince positive public participation. Taking the issue into the private sector has taken much of the pressure away from government. Yes there are laws to stop dumping and waste set free into the natural environment, but the enforcement needs to be stronger. A need for civility, for compassion, for understanding must come from our fellow man. Companies have the mandate to help by reducing excess. The capitalist machine will not yield to environmental concerns. And needs a flashing plastic tree.
Why is there such a need for plastic?
The material is tortured into existence in the laboratory using gas/coal or petroleum as its source the polymers are strung together through a catalysing process, additives are thrown in to tweak the material to its optimum purpose.
Finally we have a material that is strong, durable, flexible, lightweight and can be shaped to every desire. It is the master replicator and has outdone all previously used materials such as glass, leather, wood, ceramic the list goes on. WE simply cannot live as we do without it, think about how we catch our fish with plastic nets, transport it in plastic boxes, sell it in plastic wrapping, eat it with plastic forks and dispose of it in plastic bag. Hectic. Welcome to the plastic age. This has all happened very recently geographically speaking and the sheer volumes are the issue. The diversity in sub additives also present challenges to willing recyclers. Inevitably due to the time old cycle of consumption, when there is excess there is wastage. And the material has many uses that are once off applications that no other material can perform quite so well and such low cost. Hence plastic is seen as cheap and disposable. A crime against our own creative ingenuity and the respect we should have for such a vital and versatile material.
There is no doubt that plastic has entered the natural environment on scale that is set to have disastrous effects on the food chains and ecosystems that literally support us. If there is little we can do to clean up the mess, the best we can do is learn from it and start to reduce our effect now. Its impact is only starting to be measured but one thing we know and can practice is not LITTERING. Plastic travels easily in water, better in the wind, ultimately finding its way to high seas.
If we can see plastic with a new vision of a resource material being wasted in the hostile open environment we can see how it needs to given more protection and respect. The elemental forces, wave action, wind sheer and in particular the suns UV rays break this inert material down, weakening its bonds, fracturing its strength and durability. The pieces become smaller and smaller becoming impossible to see, let alone collect… but they are still there. A new form for the indifference of nature to assimilate. Only time will tell.
It is here that I see the reflection of mankind’s hope in the pieces, constantly breaking yet somehow persisting. All the colours and varieties mixed together, swept along by the tides of life. It is good and bad, evil and pure. We project our ignorance and indifference onto the broken banished goods, putting them out of sight, under the highway, out of the light. Yet a moment ago they held what you desired most, the very substance of survival, the truth transparent, clear and clean now gone.
By accepting this material as part of our world, as a reflection of who we are, can we assimilate it into our actions? Can we change the way we see, feel and touch? Without long fingers and teeth can we reach for someone’s lost litter and put it back where it can be useful again? Resources are both abundant and scarce depending on which side of the telescope we look through. Treasure lies all around us.
As a man with mind and hands willing to create, I could no longer avoid the need to embrace plastic as a medium. And so by giving it respect as such, on my journey it has shown me many things. No such thing as waste is one, as nothing is lost in this world. The earth is our master sculpture and I the blind echoing apprentice. Seeing a hybrid synthesised organic future of life forming on a mythological island of plastic holds a very real space. As we tango with dark matter and dissect our DNA, create cloned sheep and automate intelligence, we unweave the rainbow only to find more mystery, as we continue to shape this world.