(2019), timber, motors, resin,
A spoonful weighs a tonne is a durational kinetic installation, commissioned for the Cementa19 Festival in Kandos NSW. The work draws on the history of Kandos, where cement was manufactured until 2011, and the impact of the cement works on the community. The ropeway design in the installation is modelled on the former Kandos ropeway that ran alongside the town, carrying limestone from the quarry to the cement factory.
The work centres on a mechanical family in half scale, sitting eating at a dinner table. Above them, a ropeway with buckets carries fine powder over them, slowly layering the scene with fine dust. The family continues with their dinner, apparently undisturbed. The absurdity of the scene competes with a serious reflection on the costs versus the benefits of industrial mining and manufacturing.
While this project is directly connected to the history of Kandos, it also speaks to universal tensions between the cycle of consumption, the basic need for work, and the long-term impact of industry on human health and the environment. The family modelled in the work are replicas of the artists’ own family, an attempt to illustrate our own complicity in these systems and cycles.