The people of the United States alone toss out millions of plastic bottles every hour, and in a year, enough plastic film to shrink wrap Texas (which would be both a hilarious and horrifying feat.) Everyone knows it’s important to recycle, but it’s often hard to realize the consequences of forgetting about one little bottle; maybe we should consider not buying this stuff in the first place. (I drink out of the tap all the time, heck, I’d drink out of the hose.) Without getting on a soapbox, the following artists have made powerful statements about the ways in which we waste…. by re-using materials that would otherwise be thrown away, and removing paper and plastics completely from the recycling loop…. as even the act of recycling uses massive amounts of energy.
Beijing based fraternal pair Gao Brothers have been collaborating on nstallation, performance, sculpture, photography works and writing now for three decades and shocking museums around the world with their guerrilla tactic art, one such featuring an apologetic Chairman Mao on his knees with a detachable head. Exhibitions by the Gao brothers, whose work the authorities find politically challenging, have been shut down in the past, and their studio has been raided. So they keep the head of Mao hidden in a separate location — reuniting it with its body only on special occasions to show friends and colleagues. Normally, the body of the statue remains headless, unidentifiable and nonthreatening.