Last January (2023), we were invited to the Mumbai Urban Art Festival (MUAF) to carry out our piece The Plastic We Live With.
We wanted to graphically show the excess of plastic that is around us, a recurring issue in our work and in life, since almost everything we consume is made of it or wrapped in it or we eat it in the tiny particles found in meat and fish, not to mention the fact that it is also in the air we breathe.
There seems to be a general agreement on the fact that recycling is not enough to put a stop to this problem. Governments around the world are working on bringing its consumption to a minimum. One of the first steps has been to ban the use of non-recyclable bags and plastics at shops, which have been replaced with paper bags or bags made of biodegradable materials.
India’s government has recently banned them so it was easier for us to collect the bags that we needed to complete our piece. We got them through a public announcement made by the Mumbai First team who managed to collect more than 8,000 units through donations from neighbors and local businesses. To our surprise, plastic bags in India were not printed so the color range was not very rich. However, this was not a setback but rather gave the piece a more sober ‘organic’ look compared to past occasions.
We used them to intervene the Evelyn Guesthouse facade, completely filling the big gaps of its facade until producing the effect that the plastic was overflowing the building.
Although it was a light installation, it could also be enjoyed during the day. Its unhealthy appearance stood in shrill contrast with the magnificent luxurious facades of the Colaba district, something that really caught the eye of passers-by. At night, as they were illuminated from the inside, the windows looked as if they had been covered by a strange fluorescent toxic plastic vegetation.
The piece remained installed for 5 days, time during which it was visited by a huge number of locals. This was so thanks to the festival’s announcement.
We want to thank all the people whose hard work helped us get into the festival and set up this large piece. First off, to the 50 volunteers and workers who helped us and shared their time and experience with us.
Team: Julia, Rhea, Thomas, Arjun, Summet, Sohil, Akmal