Alejandro Durán’s photographs are so intriguing they almost make me think that littering is a great idea. That is, until I realize that the beauty in waste has only been found through his selective eye and thoughtful arrangements.
The colourful waste items of Durán’s project, Washed Up, addresses the issue of pollution that has made its way across the ocean to the shores of Sian Ka’an, Mexico’s largest federally-protected reserve. This remarkable swatch of land is home to the world’s second largest coastal barrier reef.
Durán has been working on his site-specific work since this past February. Using coloured plastics he mimics nature, with the waste washing as though waves had pushed them, or drifting through creek beds as if they were water. In his work, he uses a mix of natural and artificial light, blurring the line between what might be natural and what has been constructed, sculptured.
“The photo series depicts a new form of colonization by consumerism,” explains Durán’s project statement, “where even undeveloped land is not safe from the far-reaching impact of our disposable culture.”