Artist Hugo McCloud, known for using unusual media options such as aluminum sheets, tar paper, scrap metal and solder, spent his quarantine time in Mexico, piling up small pieces. together waste plastic bags. The result is an exhibition of 31 named works Burden, recently on display at the Sean Kelly Galleries in Hudson Yards, New York.
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A work of art is a statement against your environmental impact disposable plasticBut it is also a response to the difficulties of the human condition. The final pieces reflect the lives and stories of individuals potentially affected by the journey of a single plastic bag.
“Traveling in India, I see polypropylene multicolored plastic McCloud explains from the companies that bought and used them to distribute their products, to the Dharavi slums scavengers. “The idea that these plastic bags will always exist – never biodegradable – amuse me, curious about the hands and the lives of the many people they will go through.”
The artistic process eliminates the need for glue or paint, and instead relies on multiple layers of thin plastic bags. Results require planning, as the plastic is melted into the panel by heat from the iron. This kind of art cannot be repainted, so vision was clearly outlined from the start.
The Burden The exhibition is aptly named, conveying a message about human hardship, with the struggle being conveyed through the postures of subjects who are seen transporting trash and products. The everyday chores portrayed in works speak of economic troubles around the world and the brutal honesty of absolute existence. For his third solo exhibition with the showroom, McCloud said the collection was, “about the idea of someone who is burdened with life, trying to survive or make a living. I think in a way, everyone is burdened in their own way in life. “
In addition to the topic of everyday challenges, McCloud focuses on the plight of migrants in the Mediterranean refugee crisis who make an arduous journey across the sea in hopes of escaping oppression and poverty. The works convey a need for hope and a chance to have a better life in another land. McCloud also includes a collage of flower arrangementA focused effort to bring brightness to a moment has brought a heavy cloud to all of us. The artist said he needs to “find a moment in each day for something that is in a sense still beautiful and still gentle”.
Many of McCloud’s works can be seen at an exhibition at the Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art in Ridgefield, Connecticut in June 2021.
Photography by Jason Wyche, photos via SKNY