The Last Straw
In my current research for the ongoing project “The Last Straw”, I am investigating cultural identities, activism, social engagement, everyday life and rituals through a series of ambients created from non-recyclable used plastic materials. The goal of these installations is to open up a space for a discussion about overconsumption and sustainability, but also to create a space for grieving and dealing with loss. The Last Straw is an ongoing participatory project and artistic research of Martina Petrović. The Last Straw investigates the interconnectedness of social and ecological problems of today, and their influence on everyday life and artistic practices, by focusing on the notion of environmental grief. We have already lost a lot and we are about to lose even more - our environments, technologies, and social habits that go along with them. It is common to experience grief in five stages, hence the five phases of The Last Straw project: Denial, Bargaining, Sadness, Anger and Acceptance. The first two phases (Denial and Bargaining) were developed during Martina Petrović’s final Master project at KASK. For these phases a traditional Serbian karpet (ćilim or kilim) was hand woven out of single-use plastic straws and painted with traditional ‘magical’ symbols. This carpet is a nomadic space that tells the story of letting go. It travels to places and offers an opportunity to step into a moment of grief.