Dumpster Diver: California Brown Pelican
Video Courtesy of Ian Montgomery. 2011
Sitting on my surfboard off Carmel Beach, California, I watched a flock of pelicans fly by in a sine wave flight formation. Having just completed a collaborative kinetic wave project with artist Reuben Margolin, I decided at that moment that I could create a kinetic piece that modeled the flight of the pelican. I scavenged dumpsters, scrap yards, and industrial sites for useful materials, purchasing necessary hardware and a motor. Nine months after watching the birds fly by, Dumpster Diver: California Brown Pelican was complete. Through its movements it tells the story of the California Brown Pelican, from its near extinction due to pesticides like DDT to its recovery through grassroots environmental activism.