Flotsam, detail
Flotsam, detail

Michelle Lougee's innovative mash-up of tapestry and mosaic is composed of hundreds of small plastic debris. Up close, viewers can examine the qualities of each item, while from a distance the work reads as a vibrant abstract pattern.

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Flotsam, 2021
Flotsam, 2021

This photo gives a sense of scale of Flotsam as installed in Michelle Lougee's exhibition at the Boston Sculptor's Gallery in 2021.

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Powder Magazine
Powder Magazine

The historic 1818 Powder Magazine building has been restored and is fully ADA accessible. Mass Audubon has signed a five year contract to establish it's newest urban nature center, bringing exciting new programming to Magazine Beach Park.

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COMING UP:
MAGAZINE BEACH COMMUNITY TAPESTRY WITH MICHELLE LOUGEE say NO to single use plastic and YES to art, community & nature

Cecily Miller and Michelle Lougee are teaming up to propose a new project for Magazine Beach Park in Cambridge.  Taking inspiration from FLOTSAM (pictured, left) -- Michelle's 2021 mash-up of tapestry and mosaic made of post-consumer waste -- they are hoping to create a new community-based work warning of the environmental dangers of single-use plastic.

 

The two worked together to enlist 20 partners and 100+ community members in collecting thousands of plastic bags and crocheting them into sculpture.  Entitled PERSISTENCE, this large-scale public artwork, now on view in Arlington, MA, carried a message about the dangers of microplastics. Plastic never goes away; it just breaks into smaller and smaller pieces until it is eaten by creatures who mistake it for food or inhaled by creatures who mistake it for clean air – including humans. The sculptural forms were inspired by the microorganisms that plastic impersonates as it pervades our world.

 

The proposed Magazine Beach Community Tapestry would enlist the Cambridgeport and Riverside neighborhoods -- where Michelle and Cecily live -- to create a 6'x9' woven tapestry/mosiac composed of plastic trash.  Through community workshops and drop-in "Bees" we would make a celebratory landmark for the walls of the Powder Magazine, a historic 1818 granite building which just became Mass. Audubon's newest Urban Nature Center!

 

Many thanks to community partners Magazine Beach Partners, Mass Audubon, Charles River Conservancy, and the Cambridge Community Center  who are helping to bring this spark of an idea to life!