AQUARIUM was on exhibit from February 13, 2010 through March 6, 2010 at Sea and Space Explorations, 4755 York Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90042.
Visitors climb a ten foot staircase to feed reclaimed water into a plumbing system consisting of hundreds of used plastic bottles filled with sand, charcoal, gravel, and rocks suspended from the ceiling by the strength of hundreds of plastic bags. With the power of gravity, the water snakes and zigzags through this aqueduct/filtration system and empties purified into a modular pyramidal garden composed of food-producing, carnivorous, and water plants. And this is only the beginning of AQUARIUM.
The work of Reclamation members Drew Denny, John Matthew Heard, Kyoung Kim, Edwina Portocarrero, and Claudia Slanar, as well as the CalArts Community Arts Partnership (CAP) students of Michelle Richter, Niki Rousso-Schindler, Drew Denny, and Juan Renteria at the Whitman Continuation School, AQUARIUM is an installation that transforms the gallery space into a meeting place. Under AQUARIUM, visitors and participants address the question “What if people took the environment as seriously as religion?”—a question that has become increasingly pressing in the wake of the failed 2009 UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen and the rise of popular belief in the global warming hoax.
A series of events including musical performances, readings, and lectures held in the space throughout the duration of AQUARIUM’s exhibition will allow participants and visitors to further the discussion. Big Whup, Dublab, Emily Lacy, Human Ear Music, Gerhard Schultz, and *SADIE are among the musical guests who will take on and interpret the concepts behind AQUARIUM. Caroline Chang, Daiana Feuer, and Jared Woodland will present readings that include original work by writers who both promote and challenge Reclamation, and John Matthew Heard will launch his latest project, Wilderness Boundary.
AQUARIUM is the second in the Reclamation series, co-founded by Drew Denny and Kyoung Kim in January 2009, which recombines and recontextualizes environmental practices and faith into a pseudo-religion. Reclamation investigates issues of collective consciousness, group versus individual think, and belief systems. It incorporates shared elements among religions and systems of belief, including the need for a space in which to congregate, contemplate, and connect by referring to shared text, vocabulary, and rituals.
Reclamation’s installations are environmentally-conscious in form and content; they consist of recycled materials and use kinetic energy generated by individuals. Unlike “green” art created with new technologies inaccessible to most people, Reclamation spaces are created using DIY methods accessible to everyone. In addition to AQUARIUM, Reclamation spaces are Planetarium, Terrarium, and Solarium, which correspond to the elements of air, water, earth, and fire. Planetarium was installed July-October 2009 at Environmentaland in Los Angeles; Terrarium will be installed September-October 2010 at Hotel MariaKapel in Hoorn, Netherlands; and Solarium will be installed in 2011 at a location TBD.
AQUARIUM is on exhibit from February 13, 2010 through March 6, 2010 at Sea and Space Explorations located at 4755 York Blvd in Los Angeles, CA.
More information, including a calendar of AQUARIUM events, is available at http://www.reclamationproject.org.