White Moose gallery in North Devon is calling surfers to temporarily donate any old or unused wetsuits for an art installation.
The installation, devised by South West based artist and surfer Pete Newell, will form part of Beyond the Board; a new art exhibition opening at White Moose’s Barnstaple base this August. A first of its kind, the exhibition will explore the multi-billion pound surf industry’s impact on the natural world through the work of six hand-selected South West based artists who are also keen surfers.
Surf culture is widely considered to embody a deep connection with nature, both by its subscribers and those outside of it. Yet, the chemicals used to produce non-degradable wetsuits, surf boards and other hardware, the air and land miles travelled in search of waves, and the many isolated cultures and habitats invaded by surf tourism, are putting considerable pressure on the environment.
Artist Pete Newell particular concern is the production of neoprene wetsuits, for which tons of oil and limestone are used each year. Whilst wet suits are often patched-up, handed down or sold on, eventually they will go to landfill. Considering the natural resources used to produce neoprene are millions of years in the making, their short life-span as wetsuit material before going back into the ground as landfill seems disproportionate.
Pete Newell’s art installation of wetsuits will be formed to create a strata refering to the geological processes that helped create the fundamental material of oil or limestone that neoprene is made from. The artist’s aim is to encourage surfers to not take their wetsuits for granted, but consider it a great privilege to be able to use the resources which are ultimately responsible worldwide for surf culture today.
Note to surfers:
Ideally we would like people to bring their wetsuits to White Moose (see address below) in Barnstaple from 11am – 5pm on Friday, 1st August, but we can accept and add them to the installation throughout the exhibition (please check White Moose opening times). All donated wetsuits will be available for collection at a ‘Wipe Out’ evening, Fri 19 Sep, 5–8pm (or at another date with prior arrangement) where their owners will be given a special White Moose beer and have their photo taken with the installation.
Exhibition: Beyond the Board
Gallery: White Moose
Dates: Thu 7 Aug to Sat 20 Sep 2014
Times: Mon – Sat, 11am – 5pm
Location: White Moose, Moose Hall, Trinity Street, Barnstaple EX32 8HX, T: 01271 379872, E: firstname.lastname@example.org, W: http://www.whitemoose.co.uk
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