Convergence, Igloo on the Water
I have been working with materials from the waste stream since before the term was commonly known. In the 90’s, I built sculpture from found materials out of necessity. That was what I could afford. I was also really obsessed with Rauschenberg and his ideas about what he called, “gifts from the street”. So, I chose to work with trash to connect directly with our culture and capitalize on the metaphors inherent in artwork made from objects with a past life. This has always been and continues to be important in my work.
Convergence, is a floating igloo and the second milk jug igloo I have made. The first version, roughly the same size and shape and designed to sit on the gallery floor, had an interior space open for people to crawl inside and contemplate. Surrounded by multiples of gallon jugs with their pouring spouts all pointing toward the occupant, the outside square bottoms referred to building blocks of sea ice. With this first igloo, I was trying to conjure feelings and thoughts of nurturing and safety in addition to putting a spin on a commonly recognized object.
With the second version of Igloo being on the water and not land, its meaning has changed. It has docked here to greet us, like a giant bubble on the water.
Now, instead of housing the viewer, it houses a rain shower. Signifying ice melt and creating a visual bridge between the igloo and the water it floats on, Convergence, speaks to the notion of all waters being connected to the sea through continual cycling and flow.
On the surface, Convergence refers to plastic trash in our oceans and the environmental hazards of single use plastics. I want this igloo to be seen as a symbol of displacement, and as a symbol of humanity’s interruption of the natural landscape by virtue of our basic needs for water, food and shelter. I also want this igloo to remind us of how humanity’s needs existed in the past and how they continue to transform in the present.
About The Artist
Simone Spicer is a sculptor living and working just outside of Philadelphia. She shows her work extensively in the Philadelphia and New York area. Her education includes a BFA in Sculpture from the Maine College of Art, and an MFA in sculpture from the University of North Carolina, Greensboro. Simone is also an alumna of the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. Simone has taught art history and studio courses at Holy Family University in Philadelphia, and has taught studio classes at the Main Line Art Center and the Roxboro Art Center. For over a decade she owned a decorative painting business creating murals and specialty paint finishes in Philadelphia homes and businesses. Currently she is working exclusively in her home studio creating art in Wyncote, PA, a suburb of Philadelphia. She is an active member of the Philadelphia Dumpster Divers, the Philadelphia Women’s Caucus for Art, and a member of the Philadelphia Rebirthing Community.
Simone Spicer's sculptures in trash comment on our culture's precarious relationship with the natural world. She recombines familiar objects and post-consumer goods in unexpected ways - playfully revealing the innocence of humanity, while addressing our dire need for collective awareness and vision for change. She has shown her recent works in trash at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Independence Seaport Museum and the Woodmere Museum of Art, Philadelphia. Much of her work has been in partnership with other artist-activists to inform the public about climate change through events such as Art in The Open, Philadelphia. Simone was recently on a panel at Flomenhaft Gallery in New York, NY that included other artist-activists and Gavin Schmidt, Head Climatologist at NASA’s Goddard Space Institute, reporting on climate change, and addressing how artists are handling our predicament.