Ecological artist and activist Eva Bubla shares how art can challenge us to see the wood for the trees when it comes to our impact on the planet. She takes the Problem Busters on a fascinating tour of eco-clever projects spanning multiple countries. If you have ever wondered if your creativity could get people thinking in a positive way, then this episode is for you.
About the show:
Problem Busters is a show that highlights people with ideas to solve the biggest and the smallest of problems. Hosts Jonathan Goodwin and Oliver Happy discuss making the world a better place with guests from far and wide.
About our guest:
Eva Bubla is a Hungarian artist who deals with environmental and ecological issues. Her insightful and thought-provoking projects have both an activism and education element and have been widely recognised. Eva has participated in a range of projects and artist collectives, including Green Root Lab and PAD. Eva is currently based in Budapest.
http://evabubla.art/ (Eva's website)
01:50 Art has always been in my mind. Ever since being a child.
My current practice is rooted in Indonesia, because that is where I started dealing with environmental issues. I studied there and stayed longer, those experiences pushed me in this direction. Wanting to deal with environmental issues both as a person and as a citizen.
03:00 What sparked the interest in the environment specifically? 2011-13 I was at University, we had a task to form groups and experiment using art. I used to study painting before (a solitary process), but this working with a group, on location at the beach, was exciting. We were asked to use materials we found on the spot.
Using material on-site was one of the sparks in taking me in this direction.
Because the materials included a lot of rubbish on the beach - it was obvious to use that, and one of the experiences that started my journey.
This was 9 years ago and my perspective has changed a lot.
I would not now use rubbish as a material (I find it contradictory), but at the time it was a moment that got me starting thinking about the environment.
06:00 The question of visibility. We have services that take rubbish away, so it is not visible how much rubbish we create.
Governments such as the UK government pay for rubbish to be exported to other countries. Many just put it to landfill, it's important to follow the chain and have visibility of it.
https://www.greenpeace.org.uk/ (Greenpeace UK) as an important group in raising awareness here.
https://www.cnex.tw/plasticchina (Documentary: Plastic China). A movie about family businesses that process plastic, horrible waste, which was imported into China from other countries. It's a must-see for all of us.
Regulations are already changing, a lot of countries are already saying no to waste that is exported to them from other countries.
Making art from things that have been found can really shock people.
In that project - we built the shape of a nautilus shell, but the material related to this human habit of generating waste.
I no longer want to create artworks from waste because it has the risk of making waste look aesthetic.
11:00 Earliest memory of being interested in art - kindergarten! My first memory that comes to mind is sitting at a small table in kindergarten and drawing a tale for children.
12:30 http://evabubla.art/designated-breathing-zone/ (Project: Designated Breathing Zone). The first version came out of a residency with HONF foundation (art and engineers - makers).
My process: I have an initial idea but decide a topic to explore only once I am on the spot. The place is important for the people, the materials I work with.
I got sick in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, related to air pollution I think. This is a global issue (not related to a specific country).
Certain green areas where I used to ride my bike disappeared, so I started to dig into it and read into local regulations, how much green area the city is...