Performance and Place: Thinking forward, Looking back

Performance and Place: Thinking forward, Looking back

Since 2010 I’ve been developing works around particular geographic areas. In 2010, Your Planet brought performers, participants and audiences to Coney Island and Manhattan Beach to explore the shifting environment of sand and tides and witness a location in which debris washes ashore. This began my obsession with plastic pollution and a practice of integrating community actions into each project. It also began an investigation into water and shorelines…

Styrofoam along the LA River reflects the state of the earth and plastic pollution

Styrofoam along the LA River reflects the state of the earth and plastic pollution

I was recently in Los Angeles scouting sites for an upcoming project along the LA River. My last stop was Golden Shore Marine Biological Reserve to participate in Friends of the Los Angeles River’s annual clean up. While the majority of volunteers collecting debris gathered on the protected wetland side; I opted for the rocky terrain running along the river. Scaling down the rocks toward the water, I stopped at a sizeable gap, crouched down and began to collect piece after piece of Styrofoam. The more I dug the more was exposed. Quickly a quandary arose, do I go for large handfuls and include the natural debris (leaves, reeds and sticks) the Styrofoam is intertwined in? Do I just go after larger pieces? I spent about 20 minutes at this one 12x12 inch nook and, minus a fairly intact cup, a few straws and a Visine bottle, I seemingly did not make a dent here.