OrtaWater Paddle Pump Unit
Materials: Steel structure, traditional manual wooden paddle pump, water filtration unit, canteens, bivouacs, glass carafes, Antarctica Flag, buckets various water recipients
Dimensions: H290 x L380 x W120 cm
Catalogued: Seeking Blue Gold, ed. Fondazione del Monte di Bologna e Ravenna, 2023
Exhibition history: 2023 Oratoria di San Filippo Neri, Bologna, Italy
Courtesy: Lucy + Jorge Orta
The allocation and consumption of water are central themes in the Ortas’ poetics, examined in light of the controversial and inequitable development, distribution, and access policies that affect this resource globally. « OrtaWater Filtration Unit » are made of wooden artifacts from a rural world in which they are still used in traditional irrigation, mounted on steel structures along with contemporary crafted objects from the artists’ vast collection. The sculpture components arise as symbolic functional totems expressing the inexhaustible confrontation, at times the dichotomy between an ancestral image of the rural past, linked to natural rhythms and the exacerbation of the ideal of progress that rages today in many developing countries.