‘Water Treatment Plant’

DSC_0221 WTP

Water Treatment Plant’ consists of a number of digitally altered landscapes currently presented on a set of postcards that depict possible alternatives for solving the water pollution problems at Loe Pool near Heston Cornwall. In addressing the unacceptable by imposing industrial architecture on a historic parkland setting, It presents aesthetically challenging alternatives that ask us to reconsider our priorities to re examine and focus our activities in the solving of environmental pollution.

During spring, winter and autumn the nitrate and phosphate pollution experienced at Loe Pool on the Penrose estate Helston, Cornwall is invisible. Only in summer when the blue/green algal blooms form in large rafts seriously degrading the water quality (blocking out sunlight and thus inhibiting the growth of aquatic plant life and preventing it from thriving). It is at this point that we are reminded again that this problem, caused by agricultural and domestic pollution, is still there and remains to be a serious problem leaving a devastating effect on its ecology. Although much has been done to try to rectify the problem it is often not until the potential coming threat of a 'blot on the landscape' becoming real can the extent of a problem be made a tangible experience to visitors all year round. 'Water Treatment Plant' is an attempt to further explore by visual means the problem of the invisible pollution in the pool and present a number of scenarios that, while being perhaps contentious, allow us to consider other possible conclusions that might be necessary to turn the problem around. The project is ultimately working towards the temporary installation of a a fully functional facility. The site of the installation is to be built on the banks of Loe Pool in the heart land of the Penrose estate. Its particular position will be on the banks of Loe pool in full view of the main house. The utilitarian industrial design, deliberately intended to be obtrusive for the setting, uses temporary scaffolding, plywood exterior walls, doors and a corrugated roof. Installed inside the structure will be a working model of a working water treatment plant that references and uses the same principals utilised by Hans Haacke in his work 'Rhine water Purification Plant', installed at Museum Haus Lange, Krefeld, Germany in 1972. (see below) The physical presentation of 'Water Treatment Plant’ as an abrupt intrusion in the sublime landscape at Penrose raises the questions: Is this kind of interaction necessary? And if not, what other options are there?

Option 1

Option 2

Option 3

Option 4

Option 5

'Rhine water Purification Plant', by Hans Haacke, installed at Museum Haus Lange, Krefeld, Germany in 1972.

'By displaying Krefeld Sewage Plant’s murky discharge, officially treated enough to return to the Rhine River, Haacke brought attention to the plant’s role in degrading the river. By pumping the water through an additional filtration system and using the surplus water to water the museum’s garden, he introduced grey-water reclamation. By displaying samples of water released from the Krefeld sewage plant in large glass bottles in the local museum, Haacke's Rhine water Purification Plant (1972) increased public awareness of the Rhine River's deterioration. For this work, contaminated water was "pumped into a container where it was filtered and purified before entering a large rectangular basin housing goldfish... The presence of a large fish bowl and the picture-window view into the wooded landscape served as a point of contrast between a life-supporting ecosystem and one on the verge of collapse." Any surplus water was discharged into the garden behind the museum. (www.greenmueseum.org)