Images of Yellow Loosestrife flowers often elucidate feelings of springtime. An evocative image created by the talented Lucinda Linderman. Only the image is not a bouquet of flowers, it is a sculpture made out of Caution Tape. Lucinda is one of the original pioneers in Awareness Art. The first Eco Art Movement was pioneered back in the mid-1960s and is typically referred to as an artist’s intervention at a specific locale where a work of art is integrated into its surroundings and explores the relationship between the topography of the locale, whether indoors or out, urban, desert, marine or otherwise. A new strain of Eco Art is the Awareness Art Movement which is not just about creating art out of trash. It is about challenging, inspiring and sometimes shocking our sensibilities into rethinking how we treat the environment and more importantly ourselves. It is when an artist uses unusual mediums to express awareness about illnesses, over consumption and injustices against humanity. It is pivotal, breaks vast barriers and evokes bold statements when artists resort to using their bodies or other eye opening mechanisms to publicly travel their message to a wider audience. Awareness artist Billie Grace Lynn summarized it best in 2008 when she created the “Mad Cow“, an electric bike made out of cow bones that resembles the skeleton of a running cow. Billie Grace created a sensation while she drove around Miami on her “Mad Cow” bike. When bystanders would ask questions about her bike she would explain to them the environmental impact of factory farming and engage them in a discussion about their food choices.
Lucinda’s fascination with consumption materials started at the age of 3. As a toddler Lucinda loved to forage through her family’s garbage cans. Her parents were puzzled by her unusual behavior and fixation with trash. Little did they know their young daughter would end up studying biology and become a designer, artist and ardent environmentalist. At the age of 5 Lucinda had created her first puppy plushie by hand and without instructions. She went on to design and sew her own clothes for school as a teen. After studying biology she took classes in ceramics and welding and went on to work as an apprentice for the world renowned sculptor John Henry for 5 years.
The inquisitive scientist in her drove her to explore and test the limitations of mediums created by consumer waste. She would experiment by twisting, pulling, prying apart, heating and weaving dry cleaning bags, palate straps, plastic grocery bags, bubble wrap, coat hangers and bread tabs. She now uses these re-engineered items to create beautiful works of art, scarves, jewelry, dresses and sculptures.
Back in 2010 Lucinda was invited by Aldo Castillo to do her first performance art installation during the opening night of the MIA Art Fair. Lucinda racked her brains and finally came up with idea to do a Marie Antoinette performance. Her entire ensemble was made out of discarded consumer items. Last year she was invited back for MIA’s opening night and she racked her brains once again and came up with her reclaimed swimsuit performance. Interestingly enough Lucinda’s environmental performances have become an important aspect of her art. In her own words, her performance allows her to more readily educate and spread awareness about our self destructive habits and insatiable appetite that fuels mass consumption. She feels it is important to create art from discarded trash. But this alone does not address the issue. The real concern is to debunk why we are driven to consume so much and create so much waste. Her interactive performance art is a vehicle and means similar to that of Billie Grace Lynn’s Mad Cow Bike.
Lucinda was recently invited to participate in the Hatch Art Project in Chatannogga, Tennessee. Hatch invited 100 artists to create outdoor sculptures and performance art as a positive way to promote an old part of town. Lucinda is going to weave a whimsical white blanket out of plastic bags and cover a bridge near an old textile neighborhood. Lucinda needs Miami’s eco friendly crowd to help out with this project as she requires mass quantities of bread tabs (see image below). Drop off locations are in the process of being setup in strategic areas around town. Stay tuned for future “bread tab” drop off announcements!
In the meantime if you would like to witness Lucinda’s awareness raising art first hand then stop by Cafeina on Thursday, April 12, 2012 to see her exhibition titled “Reclaiming Miami” and a documentary film titled “Bag It”.
By Tina Cornely