Sink & Swim

 

After the abolition of slavery on the island of Mauritius, many newly freed slaves (also known as Creoles) became fishermen and subsequently established small fishing villages, particularly in the southern part of the island, rather than return to the cane fields to work for their former enslavers. Many of these fishing villages remain today and these fishing traditions have been passed down for generations. Unfortunately the trade is now threatened due to over-fishing.

I cast liquor bottles out of sugar to recreate a method of fishing used by some Mauritian fishermen. The bottles are accompanied with small metal and sugar replicas of fishing tackle, such as weights and hooks, and are wrapped and entangled in fishing line. As I cast the bottles they are hung and left to the elements of the space. Over time the bottles melt, dematerialize and shatter, reflecting the disappearance of both a community and a trade.