Alice Bradshaw: Rubbish Artist and Educator

Alice Bradshaw - Doodle - The Good Life - Apartment - April 2005 - photo courtesy of Paul Harfleet.

Alice Bradshaw – Doodle – The Good Life – Apartment – April 2005 – photo courtesy of Paul Harfleet

Alice Bradshaw, a prize-winning artist and academic specializing in rubbish and trash. Her work has been featured in museums, galleries, and festivals throughout the UK and Australia.

Alice Bradshaw describes herself this way:

I work with a wide range of media and processes involving the manipulation of everyday objects and materials. Mass-produced, anonymous objects are often rendered dysfunctional caricatures of themselves, addressing concepts of purpose and futility. I create or accentuate subtleties, blurring distinctions between the absurd and the mundane, with the notion that the environment the work exists in becomes integral to the work itself.

Rubbish: A Research Project is study project by Rubbish by Bradshaw that is a long time study project. She shares her studies on the various forms of rubbish including crap, debris, detritus, dirt, discards, junk, leftovers, litter, refuse, rejects, shit, ruins, and others. Each one features a definition and quotes, citations, and references that may be of value to you and your classes.

On the topic of garbage she shares:

“I use the word ‘garbage’ […] because I think it’s really recognizable to people. I think that’s what most people call their waste or their discards. That’s why I use it; it’s not a statement of my political or ideological stance on the issue of discards. A lot of people feel very strongly about choosing the right word, and I really respect where that comes from. I think that what we call the things we throw away is very important and it does relate to the way that what we throw out is constructed as dirty and not okay to touch or to consider as having value or being a resource.”
Heather Rogers – Gone Tomorrow: The Hidden Life of Garbage (2005) The New Press.

“A Dump: The whole world, everything which surrounds me here, is to me a boundless dump with no ends or borders, an inexhaustible, diverse sea of garbage. This whole dump is full of twinkling stars, reflections and fragments of cultures.” […] A dump not only devours everything, preserving forever, but one might say it continually generates something: this is where some kind of shoots come from for new project, ideas, a certain enthusiasm arises, hopes for rebirth of something, though it is well-known that all of this will be covered with new layers of garbage.”
Ilya Kabakov – Documents of Contemporary Art: The Archive (2006) p.32/37

“Young people everywhere have been allowed to choose between love and a garbage disposal unit. Everywhere they have chosen the garbage disposal unit.”
Guy Debord – Formula for a New City, The Incomplete Works of the Situationist International, ed. Christopher Gray (1974)

“A newspaper that you’re not reading can be used for anything; and the same people didn’t think it was immoral to wrap their garbage in newspaper.”
Robert Rauschenberg in interview with by Dorothy Seckler, Archives of American Art (1965)

Her other projects include:

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