My projects invite us to imagine a reality in which the natural world is crowded out by our constructed geology, and in which synthetic substitutes fill niches vacated by depopulated natural organisms. My substitute trees, bushes, flowers, birds, animals and hybrid organisms trade in ecological function for aesthetics and a set of wheels. They imitate in appearance only, and provide a metaphor for superficial transformation, as mobile facades that thrive best within the global transportation and information networks. Constructed from discarded synthetic materials, they bring attention to the life cycle of non-renewable synthetic material culture and offer what cost-benefit analysis might produce within an ethical framework that devalues interaction between living organisms.
I use humor and allegory to raise questions about what should populate the natural world, and how we should reconcile a closed system biosphere and limited resources with models of endless growth that encourage short-lived non-renewable material culture. I want to bring attention to the ironic relationship between the health/environmental impact of the material from which objects are currently manufactured and the symbolic meaning with which an object’s appearance, such as an artificial evergreen tree, is often associated.
My projects are embedded in the public, in spaces such as the Internet, television and parking lots where they can explore how we assign economic, aesthetic, social and ecological value to living organisms, and where they can address how our attitudes toward the natural world shape how we re-present and transform it. I employ the distributed and collaborative potential of the Internet, as well as video, digital photography, and augmented reality, in combination with constructed objects and participatory performance to work at the intersection of new media, object making and social practice.