As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, being stuck indoors made me appreciate and savour my time outside. Whilst taking my daily walks, I would constantly find litter around parks, fields and rivers. If we do not act now, the damage to our environments will become irreversible. I was instantly reminded of the 2019 plastic waste discovered across the Thames riverbank. The extensive time and hard work volunteers put in to remove and unclog the build-up of discarded wet wipes, sanitary products and many more that resulted in disgust from the public. I became fixated on how I as an artist can reduce and incorporate residues to form new work. I refused to let them become unwanted scraps, shipped off to landfills or resurfacing in the rivers.
‘Repurposing II’ mindfully highlights how precious leftover materials are. The oval shape, both intrigues and disgusts the viewers. Is it ice-cream? Is it sewage waste? The unknown begins to draw attention and uncover the vulgar reality of the ‘out of sight, out of mind’ mentality. One piece is draped with fabric whilst the other exposes the sharp stacked fragments of plaster. The contrast between the two sculptures exploits how wastefulness is concealed. The unappealing, greyscale hues and murky gloss finish makes the viewer consider a beauty amongst the unattractiveness. Recognising the anthropocentric world we live in and the ongoing issues with plastic waste. I direct the spectators to metaphorically submerge and escape into the artwork, leaving with the wake-up call to act now!