Cloud - Body Extension
Materials: Wood, recycled water bottles, papier-mâché, resin, epoxy paint
Dimensions: Variable dimensions
Catalogued: Pandamonium2, edition Guy Jowett, WWF-UK, 2012, ISBN 978-1-85850-254-0
Exhibition history: 2012 WWF Pandamonium2, Hyde Park London, UK
Courtesy: Lucy + Jorge Orta
Lucy + Jorge Orta’s series of cloud-like sculptures organically surround the body and give the appearance they are becoming auxiliary elements of the figure. Formed using discarded plastic water bottles, these "extended clouds" are a reminder of the copious amount of synthetic waste, and associated dangers this poses. Specifically, they highlight the issue arising out of the consumption, commercialisation, and exploitation of water around the world. As well as the fundamental need for such warnings, the artists also aim to communicate an essence of hope and the importance of working together to demonstrate how small gestures can make a huge difference.
The sculptures "Cloud - Body Extension" were first shown in Hyde Park, London in May 2012 for "Pandamonium", an event curated by Artwise to celebrate and support 50 years of WWF.
Lucy + Jorge Orta began experimenting sculptural methods to recycle water bottles after visiting the Zabbaleen community, Cairo’s informal garbage collectors who make their living recycling the city’s waste (2009). “Clouds” references not only the physical resemblance to clouds but also the natural water cycle, which is increasingly affected by climate change and pollution. The artists’ research draws a correlation between the lack of water in the world and its privatization and reflects on this paradox in relation to parallel economies and communities that survive on plastic waste, such as the Zabbaleen. “Clouds” also remind us of the islands of plastic that are polluting oceans and destroying marine life. At the same time the cloud is a mega-thermodynamic machine, recycling and distributing water on our planet.