Artist: Brittany Waters
Exhibition: More Than A Sandbox
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Dutzi Gallery
About The Artist
CSULB undergraduate Brittany Waters is working toward her BFA degree in the School of Art’s Ceramics Program. She will be graduating this semester and she plans to get her Master’s degree in Oregon. Waters is originally from Northern California where she was surrounded by trees. When she moved to Long Beach she fell in love with the beach. It was also at the place where she found her inspiration for this gallery – sea turtles.
The first thing that is seen when you walk into the gallery is a collection of Instagram posts that Waters has posted herself. Images of sea turtles are hung up on a wall. The turtles appear to be living life as they should be – just living the great turtle life and playing in the sand. It is not until you look on the opposite side of the wall when you realize that the turtles are not actually real. The other side of the wall shows the process Waters went through in creating these amazingly realistic sea turtles. The other half of the exhibition is blocked by a wall. The floor on that side of the room has sand poured over it. There is also a beach chair and umbrella set up. To the right of that there is a line of the clay sea turtles that Waters created. On the wall there is a projected moving image of the beach. There is also a “beach sound” playing throughout the exhibition in order to have the viewer feel like they are at the beach.
There are two main things about this exhibition: the beach and the turtles. One represents her love of nature while the other shows her interest in a growing issue. Her love of nature could be seen through her efforts in decorating this room. She used actual sand from the beach instead of just buying a bag at Home Depot. The second message is seen from the line of turtles. The line of turtles being blocked by a clear plaster wall represents how hard it is for turtles to reach the ocean. It is also a message for everyone on the importance of having a clean beach. If we have a clean beach then it will be a safer environment for sea animals.
Synthesis / My Experience
When I first walked into the exhibition room I had expected it to be focused on photography. I really admired how the pictures of the turtles that Waters took. It wasn’t until I saw the other side of the wall where all my opinions changed. Once I realized that the turtles were made out of clay and that Waters was actually a ceramic major, I was amazed. I thought it was pretty funny how Waters said she purposefully made her exhibition to look like a photography one when you first step into the room.
What I really loved about this exhibition was how unique Waters made it. The way she set up the room really made it feel as if you were on a beach. There was sand, a beach chair and umbrella, an audio cd of “beach noises” playing, and a projected moving image of the beach on the wall. All this made me really appreciate the amount of effort that Waters put in for this exhibition. Especially after learning that Waters had to make many trips to the beach in order to pour sand into the room. The sand is actually from the beach in order to make the viewer feel like they are actually in the beach! She also included palm trees that she got from her friend.