“Mother Earth is pregnant for the third time
For y'all have knocked her up
I have tasted the maggots in the mind of the universe
I was not offended
For I knew I had to rise above it all
Or drown in my own shit”
- George Clinton
Born of many doomsday conversations, this collaboration is a way of processing feelings of loss, apathy, and hope. Kelvin and I toyed with ideas of apocalyptic near futures and how our bodies would reflect the changing environment. This line of thought lead me to considering the fertility and inhabitability of both the land and my own body. Using plastic packaging waste, I explored how plastic and the body adhere to and reject each other. Jagged, burnt edges and the inherent rigidity of the material make the womb desolate. The earrings are a byproduct of the initial sculptural process. Heat formed cellophane crumples to make plastic islands. An extension of both the head and chest, they hold a little more hope than what sits empty in The Belly.
We will be experiencing deadly and ubiquitous environmental consequences within the next 25 years, so how ethical is it to bring new life into this world? And as someone who has always wanted to experience motherhood, how do you reconcile the loss of a child that hasn’t been conceived?
The Belly/The Mother
Photography by Kelvin Mendie
Modelled by Tiana Smith