Bycatch Project

This ongoing project brings awareness to the related issues of climate change and rising ocean waters through a few different artistic pursuits. 
 

 
Blue Bycatch (2015)  - Netted strips of recycled materials, anchored by single-serving water bottles refilled with tap water.

Blue Bycatch (2015) - Netted strips of recycled materials, anchored by single-serving water bottles refilled with tap water.

Bycatch Nets

This series of installations started in 2014, combining an interest in learning a new technique (traditional netting) with using found and recycled materials to express an interest in reducing human use of "new" materials. The project was born of a concern for the communities around the globe that are threatened by rising sea waters - the inevitability of their land being flooded and the effects on their livelihoods by changes in migration of sea creatures (mostly fish species) as a result of climate change.

The repetitive and meditative process of netting gives me time to think about the water as well as the people who are affected by these changes. While I work, I also reflect on the millenia during which humans have been making simple nets to catch fish – the ebb and flow of tides, of seasons, of human and marine populations.

I use traditional fishing and net materials, such as cotton and nylon cording and filament, as well as less traditional, often recycled materials that draw the observer to look more closely at the piece and its construction.  The nets are tubes of regular knotting; their drape produces spirals in the diagonal lines of the knots as well as the widening pattern as the diameter expands.  The final forms are abstracted versions of real fishing nets, with hoops that stretch to accentuate the weight and drape of the material, falling in shapes that mimic the human form.

 
Fierce Fish collage (2016)  - Pieces of plastic found on the Atlantic side of Eleuthera, where shells were scarce but garbage was everywhere.

Fierce Fish collage (2016) - Pieces of plastic found on the Atlantic side of Eleuthera, where shells were scarce but garbage was everywhere.

 

Beach Plastic Collages

I started making collages out of plastic and other flotsam found on beaches during a trip to visit friends in Eleuthera, Bahamas, in 2015, where, instead of finding the shells I had seen years before, I found plastic everywhere - beautiful in its way, but a vibrant sign of declining sea life and the impact of humans on the water. 

I have since added some images from a trip to the Chesapeake Bay in 2017. I plan to continue this series as the material presents itself to me, on future trips to beaches.