The World Reclamation Art Project (WRAP)
In our November/December 2008 issue, we included Jennifer
Marsh’s World Reclamation Art Project (WRAP), a gas station
cozy created to address the world’s dependence on petroleum. For the project,
Marsh received individual squares from thousands of people around the world that
she combined to make the cozy. Here Marsh tells the stories of three of the contributors,
including Fiberarts Assistant Editor Liz Good.
The World Reclamation Art Project on display in
DeWitt, New York (just outside Syracuse), April 12–
July 1, 2008. Photo: Cathryn Lahm.
Silvia Piza-Tandlick is a textile artist and the founder and director of Octágono
Gallery in Costa Rica. The gallery is a community-based program that provides
educational and income opportunities through the textile arts. Silvia and her
group joined the project to express their concerns towards our world’s dependency
on petroleum. In total, her group donated five truly inspiring panels. Silvia
shared with me a story about another participant, whom she met through the IFC,
that lived in Argentina. She said this amazing woman had been fighting cancer
but was struck by our community textile-based project on oil dependency and was
driven to complete a panel. Silvia said the ill woman had to take breaks and rest
her arms in ice as she was finishing her panel. Wow! That is just amazing and
The Octágono Gallery group (Costa Rica), Untitled, 2008; painted,
stitched; 3' x 3'.
Jan “Tsunami” Barnes is by far one of
the sweetest and most interesting participants that
I have had the pleasure of talking to and collaborating
with on the WRAP. As she shared her story
with me about why and how she became aware of the
project, I felt inspired and re-energized. Jan had
a sort of emotional breakdown last winter and unfortunately
had to take a leave of absence from work. As she and
her family began a healing process at home, Jan came
across an ad for the WRAP project in the
back of a local magazine. She was going through a
rough spell and trying to figure out a positive and
productive way to steer her attention during this
time of transition, so she decided to contribute a
fiber panel. Creating her piece alone, she often thought
how the world was passing by her and how she wished
she could find a way to break through the wall of
creative isolation. When I contacted Jan to tell her
that I am publishing an image of her panel in a book
and writing about her on the Fiberarts magazine
website, she was tremendously excited and pleased
that her work has inspired others. By the end of our
conversation, we both agreed that one never knows
how life is going to turn out, and even though you
may feel that the door to a community is impossible
to find, it may only be a step away. Jan does not
have access to the Internet, so placing ads in a variety
of publications to invite people to participate in
WRAP was an important way to connect with
Jan (Tsunami) Barnes (Seattle, Washington), The
Biblical Whale Takes Charge, 2008; 3' x 3'.
Liz Good, assistant editor of Fiberarts magazine,
also participated in the WRAP project by
contributing a panel. She learned about the project
through her position at the magazine and wanted to
participate. She was fascinated by the scale and intention
of the project and wanted to help make it happen.
The square she submitted was actually created as the
beginnings of a quilt some time ago when she was a
freshman in college. It had been sitting around waiting
to be put to good use. She was excited that she was
able to re-use something that hadn’t seen the
light of day in ten years and also be able to contribute
to the project; she felt the recycling of an old project
tied well to the intentions of the project.
Liz Good, Retro, 1997–2008; recycled
thrift-store clothing and fabrics; 3' x 3'.
Pulling finished sections of WRAP onto
the gas station site for installation. Photo: Steve
The collaborative as a whole is appreciative of all
the efforts of those who took part in the project,
from spreading news of WRAP to creating squares
to helping to make the project happen. A project like
this develops and expands in many directions and represents
the type of interdependent relationships artists (and
the world) need to keep moving forward. In putting
something like this together, one realizes that without
those supporting us and giving us a leg up, it would
be nearly impossible to move forward with any great
I am very pleased to announce my next project for
the 2008–2009 year. The title is Interdependence.
Much like a live tree is interdependent on its leaves/roots
for survival; likeminded societies are interdependent
on the greater whole, family units, communities, countries.
We will create a full sized tree that will be on display
in April 2009 at Big Springs International Park in
I am calling for participants around the world to
create leaves to contribute to the creation of the
tree. In total I am looking for 30,000 fiber/fiber-technique
leaves. You can be as creative as you will with what
materials and techniques you use, just keep a fiber
twist to it in some way.
Each Leaf should measure roughly 2 1/2" wide
(at its thickest point) x 4 1/2" from end to
end. You do have the option to give it shape and dimension.
The tree’s trunk and branches will all be wrapped
with handmade fiber sleeves.
Leaves are due by March 15, 2009.
the website for updates concerning mailing instructions.
The website will be updated with details in the following