It permeates almost every aspect of our daily lives.
It is an obvious observation that we are surrounded by it.
From the packaging our food is wrapped in at the supermarket, to the polyester that is woven into the clothes that we wear.
There is no escaping this man- made material.
There is one item in particular that everyone is familiar with- The Plastic Bag.
I wonder how many households have an accumulation of plastic bags stored somewhere within their home, under the stairs or lying forgotten about in a drawer?
It is a domestic object that we are over familiar with, and therefore it is understandable that many do not give this object another moments thought.
When picking up a bag to fill it with the contents of your recent purchase at a supermarket checkout, who would pause to relish the structure and design of this object?
Upon moving to London, I began to see the colours of plastic bags at local street markets, often hanging from the temporary rafters as bright beacons for shoppers to be attracted too.
Appearing in shades of red, blue or green, striped, both patterned and plain. There seems to be no colour or design left unturned when it comes to these inexpensive vest carriers.
Their designs can inform, raise questions, talk to us and celebrate with us.
They remind us of where we’ve been and what we have purchased.
Corporate emblems printed onto the plastic surfaces become portable advertisements.
Representing the company’s products whilst indicating shoppers’ wealth, tastes and personal life style choices.
Bursting with objects, the bag becomes a safe vessel for movement and storage; albeit for the times when one can become panic-stricken as the handles of a bag become too thin and weak for ‘said’ movement.
Originally provided by stores freely, plastic bags can now be purchased in the UK for a small price of 10 pence per bag as they are handed over as flat, rectangular shapes.
Brought to life with the introduction of movement in order to reveal its empty void; two thin pieces of polyethylene attached along three sides.
Each bags height, width and depth determine how they can be utilized, forming close relationships with the objects that they carry.
Bags are able to become amorphous objects with no set form, with the potential to change shape dependant on their contents.
A sculpture holds it ground, with its existence too strong to be ignored.
With plastic having an estimated lifespan of around 450 years, we can’t seem to consider that these objects are ‘disposable.’
A ‘bag for life’ actually seems to mean just that.
The temporary use we give these objects do not reflect how long they will remain with us on this planet.
It’s hard not to make a small comparison to American Beauty when Ricky recites to Jane, “It’s hard to stay bad when there’s so much beauty in the world,” as we observe the young couple watching a recording of a plastic bag dancing in the wind.
Have you ever felt like a plastic bag, drifting through the wind?
I want viewers of this project to see these plastic- bodies as individual sculptures.
Observing one plastic bag at a time in order to remember the Tote- bag- predecessor, and how much they have shaped our society and daily lives.