25 March – 30 April 2021
Curated by Candice Berman
A trio of white flowers sits atop a vase made out of dishevelled plastic. Plastic bags disguised as leaves on a dead branch of a tree, spots of hard shadow scattered around it. There is a kind of ‘eerie beauty’ to these objects transformed by Thirza Schaap; pieces of plastic she picked from the coast of Cape Town and turned into peculiar sculptural photographs with bits of trash, once off-putting, now turned “pretty’:
From witnessing how debris would wash onto the local beach like confetti in the sand, Schaap was inspired to start Plastic Ocean as an ongoing project’ to raise awareness around pollution…to try and prevent, or at least reduce, the use of plastic.” Straws; flip-flops; toothbrushes and bottles amongst other things are collected, dried and carefully sorted to create a surreal sculptural collage. Re-shaped still life arrangements ,the items as are shot on pastel sheets of paper or sand in bright, natural daylight. The effect is quirky, playful, and pop; paradoxically, this debris does not disgust us. Their dainty look seems to gloss over the urgency of plastic pollution on our beaches, but this first impression soon fades….