By Jamie Solis
The interest of art enthusiasts and environmental activists alike will be sparked by the beauty of reconstruction that is Cynthia Minet’s exhibit, “Unsustainable Creatures: Sculptures of Plastic and Light.” Utilizing society’s dependence on petrochemicals and electricity, Cynthia Minet modifies plastic materials that are otherwise thrown into landfills daily by consumers. She then reuses the plastic to create life-sized sculptures of domesticated animals, which are wired to illuminate the very light which our lives depend on through their plastic shells. Using a strategic sense of humor to demonstrate our dependency on the world we live in, the deliberate manipulation of plastic results in thoughtful consideration of the positions each animal holds. The illuminated camel bows in obedience with a neck constructed of old plastic bottles while the oxen, composed of colorful lightweight materials, conveys an illusion of strength and vulnerability. The oxen’s demeanor is consistent with the entire collection of sculptures, wearing frightened appearances leaving you to wonder if it’s something you—or humankind—has done wrong. Enjoy the beauty of these unique pieces while investigating our devastating impact on the environment.
Culver Center of the Arts, 3834 Main St., Riverside, (951) 827-3755; www.culvercenter.ucr.edu. General admission, $3.