20.04. - 17.06.2018
Shitstorm is a direct commentary on the degraded state of the environment. The time-based installation involves various ordinary lightweight plastic litter, collected by the Institute of Marine Research outside the shores of Bergen, that circle endlessly in a vortex of air. The work brings about a state of reverie or trance in the viewer. Raising an important question of whether we have become subdued or reduced to a state of submission in regard to dealing with the oceans plastic pollution.
In spite of the title, and the fact that you will be greeted by flying trash this exhibition is both aesthetic and poetic. On its most basic level, Wurtzel´s work is an attempt to transform ordinary matter into something extraordinary, to bridge the conceptual realm to the material world. His point of entry into art making has been through using materials in ways that distill and re-present various aspects of their inherent physical properties, revealing an unexpected beauty in a previously unseen way.
For Wurtzel´s exhibition at Kunsthall 3.14, the trash is marine waste picked from the coast entrance to Bergen, and some from the city's art institutions during the last month. The result is a beautiful and sore art installation that deals with something political and acute. Everything from researchers to volunteers has been collecting plastic for this magnificent exhibition. The plastic is dispersed and flow throughout the exhibition hall. Set up to be, in direct dialogue with the room and its distinctive characteristics and as well as its view to the ocean. The artist´s final decisions for the installation is made site related, where the amount, texture, and color of the plastic and expression and the speed of the fans that create waves of garbage patch. All this contribute to the viewer's perception of encountering a physical entity. Plastic currently litter the ocean and if the 5 major ocean garbage patches are left to circulate, the plastic will impact our ecosystems, health and economies. Solving it requires a combination of closing the source and cleaning up. The most effective might be using the ocean´s own currents systems as its driving force to catch and concentrate the plastic. Here in the exhibition, Wurtzel propels into motion by something that is invisible, the aerodynamic properties of the plastic materials, and the underlying order within these inherently chaotic airflow systems are revealed in a way that can be continuously observed.
At this moment in time, we find an increasing amount of private and state-run institutions trying to solve our heavy addiction to plastic. Uplifting, it is to witness the world going forward in relation to this problem. During the realization of 'Shitstorm' we have been fortunate to collaborate with the Institute of Marine Research, UNI Research and several private individuals who spend their profession and spare time to clean up our shoreline. Bergen is lucky to have such an engaged cluster working for us and our environment. It reminds and inspirer to do more in our daily shopping and recycling. In this project, we have been fortunate to collaborate with the Institute of Marine Research and UNI Research. The Marine Research Institute are working on a mapping process, gathering an overview of the amount of marine trash both at the bottom and in the water. Studies have also started on doing research on the amount of microplastic in the seabed, where the plastic collects itself and they are estimating the costs of the hole clean-up for the Municipality of Bergen.