'Trash art' speaks for protecting world's oceans
October 12 2018 10:49 PM
Swapna Namboodiri works on a new artwork that would be part of her solo exhibit 'For the Planet'.
Swapna Namboodiri works on a new artwork that would be part of her solo exhibit 'For the Planet'.

A workshop on recycling will highlight an upcoming art exhibition on environment protection, particularly the world’s oceans, slated on October 23 at Katara – the Cultural Village.

Doha-based artist Swapna Namboodiri is launching her first solo exhibit, which is part of her ‘For the Planet’ series at Katara’s Building No 5 and will run until November 2. On October 27 at the same venue, Namboodiri will hold a workshop titled ‘Creating Art from Trash’.

“The workshop will revolve on creating mosaic artworks by recycling used plastic products into pieces of art. It is open to any age group, so anyone who is interested could register at the Katara Art Centre,” Namboodiri told Gulf Times yesterday.

‘For the Planet’ is an art series that raises awareness about the harmful effects of plastic waste on the environment, especially on the ocean and ocean life. According to Namboodiri, it was forecast that there will be more plastic scraps than fish by 2050 if indiscriminate disposal of plastic materials remains unabated.

Used plastic products such as bottles are cleaned, hand cut, and hand painted to be assembled into artworks.

“This grim scenario has changed my perception and use of plastic products. As much as I can, I try to reuse plastics – containers, bottles, and what have you, before throwing them away. Instead, I use them to create artworks that help in the campaign to protect the environment,” she explained. Namboodiri’s ‘For the Planet’ series had also reached foreign shores being one of two participants from the Middle East to join the ‘Tokyo International Art Fair 2018’ held in May this year in Japan.

Following the success of the Tokyo exhibition, Namboodiri is launching her first solo exhibit here, adding new art works to the series. The exhibition will showcase 20 of Namboodiri’s selected sculptures made entirely out of discarded plastic products like bottles and single use cups.

“All these works revolve around the theme ‘Ocean Life’. Majority of the works are new in the series, while I have included few artworks that were showcased during the Tokyo International Art Fair 2018. The harmful impact of plastic pollution on our marine life is the main reason why I create art using these mundane materials, which, in turn, spreads great awareness,” she stressed.

Asked if her works at the exhibition will be available to the public, Namboodiri said: “To be frank … since I was a novice in the international art scene, and didn’t expect to sell my works at the Tokyo exhibition. But it was a great experience to know that people are willing to collect and treasure art made from trash.

“So, all the proceeds from this exhibition will definitely go to more recycling projects. I have plans to work more on public installations in Qatar, which will help to reach out to many people.”

Last updated: October 12 2018 10:50 PM

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