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Blooming to Death is an interactive sculpture that requires movement to trigger a pumping system that pushes toxins into a basin of clean water. The piece consists of a ceiling sculpture of tubing with fishing line running down into a pan of water. As the viewer approaches the surrounding space, the sculpture activates by pumping a variety of liquids such as milk, paint, and cleaning chemicals, from the tubing into the pan. The viewer’s proximity to the sculpture determines the number of pumps activated, and the amount of movement determines the speed of the pumps.

This piece illustrates the direct connection between human activity and non-point source pollution. Blooming to Death uses the viewer’s movements against them by forcing them to watch their actions translate into contamination. The only action the viewer can take to halt the stream is to stand extremely still. This sense of helplessness points towards the difficulty of finding a solution this pervasive problem. It’s not just carelessness that feeds this issue but the harmful qualities of the products consumed on a massive scale. Blooming to Death asks the viewer to consider the amount of damage the individual can afflict.

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