Marissa Shell - Weavings - Fiber Art  Sea Foam
Marissa Shell - Weavings - Fiber Art - Breathless
Marissa Shell - Weavings - Fiber Art Tortoise

These weavings, each constructed with some form of plastic, were inspired by my exploration of the ocean.  They examine the impact that industrialization and capitalism have on our environment. For this project I researched the great Pacific Garbage Patch, major oil spills in history, the oxygen producing function of phytoplankton (phytoplankton produces 50% of the Earth's breathable air), and the effects that run off chemicals- such as nitrogen and phosphate which often cause excess and toxic algae blooms- have on our fresh water sources. Through these pieces, I aim to instill awareness of our daily habits, such as such as using plastic groceries bags, washing our hair, and buying products which often contain unnecessary and excessive packaging, which enable mega sized companies to continue to profit off of our consumerism without any regard to the damage they cause the environment.

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These pieces were inspired by my perpetual interest in space travel and in particular, a radio piece I heard on NPR about Playtex’s construction of Neal Armstrong’s space suite for Apollo 7 in 1962. It was noted that the seamstresses were not able to use pins to hold the fabric together when producing these garments, which is fascinating considering the difficulty and dexterity that must have been required to make them. Inspired by this, my general fascination of astronomy, and popular science fiction films and culture from the 70’s and 80’s, these weavings are a visual expression aroused by our celestial universe.