Invasive species are introduced into new environments
for a variety of reasons: to expand crops, beautify gardens, and
control pests. Or: accidentally as part of globalized travel and
trade. The kudzu vine is a prime example of a plant that can invade
its environment and slowly take it over.
Plastic has likewise thoroughly invaded our lifestyles.
It is in virtually everything we use: clothes and shoes, toys
and tools, food shipping and storage containers. Plastic has filled
garbage dumps to overflowing and created hundred-mile toxic gyres
in our oceans. In our pursuit of consumerism, we have allowed
our lives to be taken over by a harmful material that we cannot
discard without creating massive environmental hazards.
In this installation, I created kudzu vine leaves
to engulf an older building with its uncontrollable growth. The
leaves were made of crocheted plastic bags which climbed and slowly
"choked" the structure with their invasive growth. The
installation was done in Wisconsin and in Taiwan.