Artist: Constance Collins
Title: Black Tide: Not Optional
Attribution: Black Tide: Not Optional ; 2021 ; Constance W. Collins
Materials: Upcycled handwoven silk, alpaca and bamboo fabric; handmade paper
Dimensions: 16"w x 12'h
Image Statement: Black Tide: Not Optional is my message about the destruction of waterways through the wasteful practices of uber-consumerism & fast fashion combined with reckless unregulated manufacturing. There was a joke in Asia that you could tell the seasonal 'it' color from the color of some rivers. Unregulated textile factories spilled their dyes into the nearby rivers, artificially coloring them each year. But now some are solid black from the accumulated chemical and dye runoff. These fashion factories destroy waterways throughout the world and leave individuals without clean drinking water while causing physical ailments. Now "70% of the rivers & lakes in China are contaminated by the 2.5 billion gallons of wastewater produced by the textile industry"1. And that is just one place. In this piece, my handwoven fabrics represent the last 6 years of the Pantone ‘It’ colors, becoming metaphorical rivers that intertwine into a black mass representing the environmental damage that the textile and fashion industries produced to meet the demands of fashion consumers.