Visions, Ideas, and Next Steps

Posted on Aug 22, 2012

Conceptual meditations on marshes and death, prompted by Michael Taussig and John Stilgoe:

Marshes, Miasma, Decay, Death, Slowness, Failure, Marshes ‘rejected/subsumed’ by culture, the ‘boringness’ of marsh landscape blanketing the interesting essential utility of it’s hidden power (water filtration, flood relief, stinky/smelly nursery for micro organisms), Life from death & life cycles; Need for satire/spectacle to complement the death/failure/slowness/boringness of the flotants, Death metaphor/closeness with death providing helpful introduction to essential connection between death and transition (see: climate change/culture change/behavior change/adaptation/extinction), Funeral dirges, Pay attention to the humor of the slowness of marsh growth to the spectacle of marsh cultivation and care

Design meditations, prompted by discussion and excitement around “the domestic”, care work, and handwork:

Crochet, Quilting bees, Stitch and Bitch, Sampler quilts/sampler crochet throws,  Is the pirate radio station like an audio ‘sampler’ of sorts?  Similarly could the audio track to the video be an audio/idea “sampler”, Incorporate crochet mock-ups into installation as inspiration, integrate group crochet workshop into gallery show and/or community engagement opportunity for making of flotants, Explore crochet lace and edging and crocheted fish nets and other structures, Begin with ‘hard’ structure (provides ballast for mussels, radio tower, etc.) but make flexible enough to withstand rough seas, Incorporate recycled materials and found objects that can float, Use jute or natural hemp rope to make crocheted matte for salt marsh plants to root into

Design meditations, prompted by discussion about ‘Culture’ objects/initiatives on land that draws attention to flotants installed at sea:

Consider greywater systems: workshop that teaches people to make their own greywater filtration in a way that patterns the effects/designs of flotants, Look at observation decks and think about land-based observation site that mimics forms out at sea (maybe it incorporates a mail station/radio station/message in bottle making/allows for feeling and smelling marsh-like things), Welcome events/spectacle: mussel food truck/food truck for swimming/single-celled organisms/welcome party for ‘rogue’ marsh arriving at new location/community created marshes using crochet technique and deployment festival, Flotants need to be close and far at the same time – conceptually, emotionally, and literally – use communication strategy to achieve “closeness” and connection/compassion (adopt a flotant/community-supported flotants”)

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