Visual Art + Tech
Stevens Institute of Technology
Stay for a While
The waste we currently sit on.
Over 5,787 pounds of clothes are burned or landfilled every second. This equates to over 182,500,000,000 pounds every year.
I began my research into furniture, more specifically the chair. I came to learn about how the chair is a direct reflection of the time period it was built it. For example, Marcel Breuer’s Wassily Chair, made in 1926, marked the beginning of a new era of modernism.
It was then that I had the idea to use the chair as a platform to make a statement about the world we live in now, and the waste that we sit on.
To put this into perspective, that's one dump truck filled with clothes being dumped into a landfill every second.
This fact was the inspiration for this project. It made me feel overwhelmed, angry, and helpless. As a result, I wanted to explore the ways we could reverse the detrimental effects of consumerism by taking back fabric waste and turning it into something useful.
When I asked my community for fabric donations for the project, I was once again overwhelmed. The sheer volume of clothes that people were ready to donate or throw away was more than I had anticipated. These piles of clothes still had potential to become something great or to live a second life somewhere else. That is why all of the donations I received for this project are being donated to local organizations after the completion of the exhibition.
To me, this project serves as both a memorial and an opportunity. The piles of clothing you see are reminiscent of landfill hills. A memorial for billions of pounds of clothing that get tossed every year. But at the same, the chair form represents the possibility of a new life. The chance for these discarded pieces to live a second life as something else, something useful.
To me, it means that now is the time to start thinking of better ways to manage and recycle our waste.
The Waste That We Sit On
Built to Not Last
A Throne of Blue
Nylon fabric takes 30-40 years to decompose. However, it is not destined to sit in a landfill for all of this time. It can be broken back down into nylon fibers and recycled into something new. I wanted to represent this action of making something new out of something discarded in my very own project.
To my generous neighbors Maria Ludwig, Lisa McKnight, Heather Landsittel, Carol Townsend, Emily Mellow, Chrissy Munn, Alvarine Syiem, Laura Lattmann, Donna Darata, Susan Sturdevant, Dawn Buchan, Cynthia Maneely, Saewon Hoang, Nicole Gehrig, Olivia Yee-Chan, Maasa Kuwana-Muelhaupt, Maureen Esposito, Lisa Hora, Laurie Lake, Alexandra Loureiro, Caroline Virella, Liene Tetere, Stacey Maisch, Lori Rillo, Lisa Castellano, Erin Peterman, Bahar Akalin, Amy Tefft, Don Burkitt, Mary Beth Bernoskie, Priya Borana, Debbie Barletta, Lina Verma, Kara Nohilly, Nikki Wichtendahl, Diane Connor, Sallie Gotoff, Bird Bridgette, Robin Friedman, Amy Maurizi, Maria Vikan, Wynn Johanson, Faith Brewitt, Margaret Lorenzo, Nadja Springer, Janet Smith, Mary Engelbrechtsen, and Colleen Sofronas.
Without you, this project would not have been possible.
To my family.
To the senior class.
To my advisors, Nancy & Chris.