Long durational performance- 230 h at the museum, 20 h at the Sandvik Beach, video work, the installation made with 807 collected and recycled sea plastic objects, duo exhibition ‘You are Here’, Reykjanes Art Museum, Keflavik, Iceland 2022/2023, Supported by Myndlistarsjóður Icelandic Visual Arts Fund.

The work Re-Covery is Vena Naskręcka’s journey, and her goal is to clean single use plastics from Sandvík on the Reykjanes peninsula. She appears as an astronaut from the future who has come to clean up after excessive consumption and waste, moving the plastics bit by bit into the Reykjanes Art Museum, where she cleaned, examined, sorted, and recycled. Vena feels a personal connection to the ocean, it draws her to it, and she wonders about its future. Microfibers have also been found in drinking water and in the air that we breathe. Plastic has revolutionized the world, but not just with single use packaging, it has also wielded some positive results within the medical field. Vena knows this from personal experience as she had to wear a plastic brace for 10 years to correct a serious spinal curvature, her youth was tainted by the fact that her body had to be bent into shape to suit society standards. The installation Re-Covery also includes the work Being from 2012. It is a sculpture made from plastic, molded in the form of the artist’s own body and created in collaboration with an orthotist. The corset is simultaneously protective and restrictive; when Vena wears it, she is stuck to the wall and cannot move. The work combines her thoughts on the relationship between the body and material things. Vena is concerned by ableism; she sees a likeness between the plastics cast up on the shore that have lost their value and how the bodies of disabled people are marginalized. During the exhibition period the ocean plastics has taken on the form of the spinal cord, which slithered from the corset to a bed where Vena can rest, as easy in her own body.

Text by Helga Arnbjörg Pálsdóttir

Photo credit Rafal Nowojewski