Towns and cities are generally built around the presence of clean water. Water fountains have been built for centuries and often act as a central focal point in a town. They are symbols of life, health, and are also used to communicate prosperity and power. Traditionally, water fountains were a source of safe drinking water and a meeting place for the community.
Like ancient towns built around the presence of water, contemporary society has been built around reliance on oil. Although we don’t see liquid oil every day, it is in fact surrounding us at all times. Oil in the form of petrol and diesel, is the main source of fuel for transport. We wear oil in the form of polyester and nylon fabrics in our clothing, and we even wrap our food in oil, in the form of plastic.
Oil Fountain is a new artwork currently in development that is designed to make us think about how oil has built contemporary society. Creating an interesting tension, the artwork will be both very beautiful and slightly disconcerting. Due to the slight smell it omits and the sound of the oil falling into mirror-like pools, the artwork will look extraordinary in different lights and settings. Surrounding architecture and members of the public will reflect wonderfully on the surface of the oil.
With a climate crisis underway, we now need to move away from dependency on oil as quickly as we can. This artwork will act as a focal point for conversations we all need to have about the best way to reduce our dependency on oil and the impact it, in the form of plastic, is having on our planet and how we can move towards a net zero future.
Created from used engine oil and recycled acrylic, laser cut into the surface will be all sorts of details of plants and animals impacted by humanity’s industrialisation. Materials for the artwork by recycled again at the end of the project.
Designed to Tour
The Oil Fountain is designed to tour and can be taken from city to city. It will be suitable for presentation at museums, city festivals, science museums, and art galleries.