Friday, March 4, 2011

Bobbing on the Gyre: Afloat in Plastic Cup Lids

 Cup of the Day #74
"Plastics all at Sea" by Gwyneth Leech
India ink and encaustic on 
upcycled white paper coffee cup

"What's with the cup lids? Explain that to me." His tone was not reassuring.

"They are because the installation is about drinking drinks on the go," I explained. "The people outside the window are carrying their coffee breaks, drinking with the lids on. Imagine you are in Times Square. Erase all the people and you would see something like this - the cups all tipped up every which way.

 Passerby Day #3

"Also, the cup lid acts as a frame, setting off the drawing."

He still looked unconvinced. "I just see a lump of white plastic."

"Look closer. Every lid is different: flat top, sip top, flip top tabs, resealable tabs, sliding tabs."I picked up a Solo Traveler Deluxe lid with a high profile that has an intricate sliding mechanism to close off the sip opening while walking. "This is a feat of engineering. If mankind can do this, we can do anything!"

 View form the window Day #4

"And here is something else to consider. My cup drawings are treated with encaustic - immersed in molten beeswax and Damar resin, then fused with a heat gun. It's an ancient process of preservation, and encaustic paintings have survived intact from Roman Times - that's several thousand years. But the plastic lid that tops your cup drawing  -  talk about archival! It's non-biodegradable and will be in your family for a hundred thousand years or so, if not a million."

"OK," he said. "you've convinced me."

Drawing in the window Day #4

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