CAROL DEVINE  (Toronto, Canada)

Aqua Mess: Portraits of food trash in the Arctic by Carol Devine, 2015, photograph

The world food and environmental crisis impacts us all somehow, as we are interconnected. Not even the remote Arctic is immune from the human behavior of over-consumption of resources and the related pollution. Hunger grows. Plastics seep into our oceans and food chain. I went to Svalbard Norway to help clean-up the top of the world. Amidst the trash that makes it to the high Arctic via different ocean currents, I discovered fishing nets, endless plastics, and so much food packaging. I made portraits from the survey of garbage we collected (part of a larger exhibit called Aqua Mess): Norwegian mustard, Italian citrus juice, Chinese noodles packaging, Swiss freeze dried coffee and German bitters, all converge in the most beautiful forlorn place above the Arctic Circle. Few humans go there but our globalized food remnants on the melting permafrost, are a reflection of us and serve as a bellwether for us to change our ways.