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Stills from Deb Todd Wheeler's So She Floats.

New Media: Deb Todd Wheeler
June 22 - Oct. 9, 2011
Opening Reception
5:30-8 p.m., First Friday, July 1, 2011

The third installment of our newly launched new media series is Deb Todd Wheeler, who is described as “one of the standouts among Boston’s conceptual sculptors and installation artists.”

Wheeler’s video So She Floats will be shown in the New Media alcove in the Batchelor Gallery for Contemporary Art along with two artifacts from the video: the oar and a section of the inflatable dress.

In 1988, the discovery of a patch of accumulated plastic debris in the North Pacific larger than the size of Texas captured the imagination of many, providing tangible evidence that indeed nothing we make ever really leaves us. Deb Todd Wheeler’s new media exhibition, So She Floats, is a poetic rumination on the earth’s oceanic currents, and the role human productivity plays in the growing population of plastic particulates that are caught up in the gyres.

So She Floats is one of many projects by Wheeler that explores qualities of a particular kind of plastic, blown film polyethylene, the very material our daily newspapers are wrapped in.

The video features a woman wearing a polyethylene dress that gets inflated by her foot-pump wearing companion, who follows her to the sea, where a small circular raft awaits her. The dress wearer then takes her oar and with great determination, tries to head out to sea. Despite her efforts, no matter how she paddles, she can only go in circles, endlessly spinning around.


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