Oil Chic ,2016 was inspired by the catastrophic grounding of the container ship, MV Rena, on the Astrolabe reef, off the coast of Tauranga in 2011. The event was New Zealand’s worst ever maritime disaster. Although tens of thousands of marine lives were (and still are) affected, among the worst have been the little blue penguins. Weighing just 1 kg, they are the world’s smallest penguin and are a protected and declining species in New Zealand.
In response, some communities rallied together to knit sweaters for these penguins. The idea was to keep the oil-soaked birds warm and prevent preening and ingestion of the toxic substances until they could be put through treatment. Although this effort has been deemed impractical by New Zealand wildlife centres as they have more suitable and less distressing facilities for the same purpose, I was inspired by the idea of making things for animals to wear to help them survive in the face of new or unnatural threats.
Media: Fine Art Print Signed by Tara Cassidy
Print Size: A4 (210 x 297mm) A3 (297 x 420 mm)
Framed: A4 (305 x 381 mm) A3 (435 x 530 mm)