570kg of Cranberries – that is the amount of fruits that would have been necessary to cover the surface of a 9 diameter circular harvesting structure. About 562 500 hand coloured clay pebbles float in Bristol`s central fountain instead – as a metaphor on both aesthetics and environmental impact of industrial food production.
Even though wet harvesting of cranberries is forbidden in the UK, most of the cranberry products consumed locally are imported and thus wet harvested.
For this harvesting method the fields are flooded with water, which makes the fruits float to the surface after they have been mechanically ripped off the plants – thereby making use of the small air pockets inside the cranberries. This flooding and its environmental implications, for example the death of small animals, would pose a problem to UK farming.
Cranberry Fields invites the audience to perform an urban harvesting experience. Raking the fountain references the striving for well-being in today`s consumer culture both through the choice of fruit, the cranberry as a popular superfood, as well as through repetitive action.
By ultimately faking fruits through painted clay pebbles the artwork comments on industrialization of food production, the deception of customers by ready-made products and questions a human effort to make up for nature.