Waste relates contextually to the way we behave in this materialistic, consumptive society, as well as to the material generated in the process. Effective and efficient waste management has become an important environmental justice issue. There is a growing market in the trans-boundary movement of hazardous waste from developed to developing countries, a result of the ‘not in my backyard’ attitude. Waste is a global problem making awareness building and education essential goals.
A study released by the United Nations in 2013 predicted that by 2017 the number of electronic equipment and appliances being disposed of will triple. Meanwhile, our modern ‘Throw Away’ society has contributed to the creation of the world’s most well known marine landfill – the Pacific Trash Vortex. Here in Hong Kong over 6 million tonnes of municipal waste is disposed of each year – a 20% increase over the past 10 years. This increase has occurred much faster than anyone expected, placing Hong Kong’s landfills under enormous pressure. Its three landfills are expected to be full by the end of this decade, making it clear that Hong Kong needs a more sustainable waste management policy. There are many options available from prevention, re-using, recycling, energy recovery to disposal. It is time for Hong Kong to take ownership of its waste, for its people to alter their waste generation habits and effective solutions for waste disposal adopted.
TRES (Ilana Boltvinik + Rodrigo Viñas, Mexico City) is an art research collective that has focused on exploring the implications of public space and garbage through artistic practices that concentrate on the methodological intertwining and dialogue with science, anthropology, and archaeology among other disciplines. They recently were awarded the Robert Gardner Fellowship for Photography of the Peabody Museum at Harvard University. Their works have been presented in Abandon Normal Devices Festival 2015 (UK), Metropolis Biennale 2009 (Denmark), the public art section of the XV Festival of Mexico City FMCH (Mexico City), in the Amsterdam Global City #2:Mexico, WCA World Cinema (Netherlands), ViBGYOR International Film Festival (India), Festival Transitio MX_05 Bio mediations, and Cultural Center of Spain (Mexico City) among others. Individually their works have been shown in over 20 screenings and art exhibitions in Latin America and Europe.
“Ubiquitous Trash” is a process of continual scavenging that depicts the social life of the strange abandoned objects we call trash. Starting with incessant walks and obsessive scavenging in Hong Kong, TRES has explored the signs and marks imprinted on trash collected from public spaces and from official waste sites. This scavenging activity, typical of the collective, was first transformed into a book, where the intertwining of public space and trash became the place where a multiplicity of relationships where explored, making clear the sociopolitical from an artistic perspective.
Ubiquitous Trash – Hong Kong Edition Details:
Date: July 2-11, 2016
Venue: Connecting Space, G/F Wah Kin Mansion, 18-20 Fort Street, North Point
Artist Talk – Interdisciplinarity as an art practice. Intertwining public space and garbage
Date: July 6, 2016
Venue: Para Site (22/F, Wing Wah Industrial Building, 677 King’s Road, Quarry Bay)
The production of most contemporary art is based on complex methodologies. For TRES, collective work, dialogue, displacement and translation are key elements in building an art project. As to explain each of these strategies used, we will address the artwork we have produced during the last seven years, where the main concern has been garbage in a material and conceptual sense.
Date: July 21 – September 10, 2016
Venue: Puerta Roja (1/F soho 189 art lane, 189 Queens Road West, Sheung Wan)
Date: Sept 12 – October 28, 2016
Venue: Octavio Paz Gallery Consulate General of Mexico (2502 Caroline Centre, 28 Yun Ping Road, Wan Chai)