Dust Cover For Parkette Bench | Avery Mikolic-O’Rourk
“Roughly one year ago I began collecting all plastic materials that my household consumes, for the purpose of transforming this waste into useful art material. First and foremost I repurpose this ‘trash’ as a way to reduce the ecological footprint of my art production and daily living habits (less waste produced through traditional art materials ; more waste diverted from resting in a landfill), though I also have a great appreciation and somewhat-morbid fascination with trash, litter, and – more broadly speaking – wasteful, industrial materials. While an empty chip bag on the side of the road is a banal- oft unnoticed- marker of contemporary culture, the reality of these objects is much more significant. They are the final stop in a long, and complex road of industry which does in-fact have significant ramifications on the state of the world. Furthermore the garish aesthetics of corporate branding, to which we have become largely desensitized, offer up a true visual feast fully deserving of our conscious sensorial reconsideration.
This particular intervention is the first of what I intend to be an ongoing body-of-work utilizing these recycled plastics. Inspired by methods of hostile architecture wherein additional structural components are added, whose function is to limit functionality, I became interested in the ‘dust cover’ as an object: itself an added material that offers ‘protection’ at the cost of utility and ruggedness (as one is now condemned to ‘protecting’ the sanctity and preciousness of the superfluous and delicate outer-skin). Furthermore, using garbage as material, there is something humorous and absurd in the notion of using waste to maintain order and cleanliness. Wrapping a public bench with trash and corporate branding calls to attention the true conflict at the heart of hostile architectures in public space: how public is public space? If not “fully” public, then whose space is it? And, who, ultimately, dictates how this space is used?”