New Hampshire based eco-artist Tim Gaudreau shares his view that "it is the responsibility of the artist to communicate a relevant vision about our world and society," through provocative and funny site-specific installations and performance. His clever work comments on important pervasive issues such as habitat destruction due to suburban sprawl, the impacts of littering and the importance of reconnecting to the natural world. To further communicate the visceral urgency of these issues, Gadreau's website actually greets visitors with an alarm sound.
One series of projects involves Lost and Found fliers (available for placement in your community- just email the artist) with descriptions of LOST "items" such as salmon habitat and FOUND garbage such as the empty crushed pizza box whose description suggests "may have held important papers". Each includes the artist's phone number and website address and looks much like the standard LOST & FOUND posters for pets or property seen on telephone poles or community bulletin boards.
Other works include metal framed "Nature Viewers" which encourage an appreciation for the environment, as well as viewers with images of buildings on glass placed near sites slated to be developed. These prophetic images of loss provide a jarring glimpse of what the future may hold in each location. Another art project involved a staged "Suburban Sprawl Development: Phase I" where Gaudreau staged a mock housing development complete with actors playing the role of sales people, handouts, maps and construction stakes that enabled volunteers to engage the public in local conservation issues.
"With refreshed appreciation of our environment and consideration of our own individual impact upon the Earth, we strive to make improvements in our behavior. Sometimes big things happen in small ways; with a new mindset, recycling programs begin, zoning laws adapt, environmental preservation programs are funded and votes are cast." Tim Gaudreau's eco-art interventions create unexpected opportunities where the minds of ordinary citizens and the worlds they envision can be changed.
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