Art Galleries

Running the Numbers

When: Sept. 30-Jan. 7 2011

"There is no Mount Everest of waste that we can make a pilgrimage to and behold the sobering aggregate of our discarded stuff," writes activist-artist Chris Jordan, who makes visible in monumental Photoshop images that dispersed national and global waste stream: 11,000 jet contrails (eight hours of national "product"); 28,000 oil barrels (two minutes); 106,000 cans (34 seconds); 100,000,000 trees (one year); and 2,000,000 plastic bottles (five minutes). Thankfully, the alarming content sometimes takes witty symbolic form: 32,000 Barbie dolls (representing elective boob jobs per month) become a topless landscape; 32,000 light bulbs (representing KWH of electricity wasted every minute in technologically benighted American homes) become a creative solar system; and 2,400,000 pieces of plastic, harvested from the mid-Pacific (representing the daily poundage dumped into our oceans) replicate Hokusai's "The Great Wave off Kanagawa." Running the Numbers runs through January 7 at The David Brower Center (2150 Allston Way, Berkeley). 510-486-0286 or

DeWitt Cheng

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