Currently on view.
While investigating the plastic pollution in our oceans, Kirsty Little kept coming up against numbers that she could not comprehend.
Americans use over 35,000,000,000 (35 billion) plastic bottles each year. Trillions of micro plastics virtually invisible to the human eye are being eaten by plankton and working their way up the seafood chain to our plates. We have barely reduced our plastic footprint since plastic production began 50 years ago. Only 9 to 25% goes into recycling. The rest ends up in our oceans and landfills.
Kirsty Little’s installation opening at the Katzen Gallery At American University is one of the ways that she is working to raise consciousness about plastic pollution. She wants people to think about how many plastic items they use once and then discard. She wants to sensitize people to the costs of careless consumption and disposal of plastic.
To make this installation possible, Little worked with over one hundred people who collected plastic lids and caps from their households and helped her construct individual numbers overflowing with plastic. Once people started collecting plastic, they began to see it everywhere in their daily lives. The plastic used in this project filled every room in Little’s house. This is a tiny personal portion of the plastic garbage generated every second all over the world.
About the artist: Kirsty Little is a former circus aerialist based in the United Kingdom for two decades when a move to United States in 2011 led her to find a new path in the art world and change her style of performance. She is drawn to working with themes of motherhood, per- sonal identity, anatomy and the struggling environment. She makes sculpture with porcelain, wood and wire, and more recently, plastic and fish installation, focusing on the oceans present pollution crisis. She is resident artist at Otis St studios and teaches aerial dance at Upspring studios. She is in the Guinness book of World Records for directing the most aerialists choreographed on silks. Recently she performed at The Theatre Project in Baltimore in aerial collaboration with Jayne Bernasconi. Her sculptural installation, ‘Refuse?REFUSE, 1T’ has been on display at Red Dirt Studio, Harmony Hall, and next at Up Studio. She has taken this work into her daughter’s school, galvanizing the students to collect lids and make ‘500 Million’.
This artwork can be hung in various different ways reducing the lenght and layering the numbers. It can be made site specific.