Chris Jordan Revisits Hokusai

Quoted, referenced, and revisited by too many artists to count, Hokusai‘s The Great Wave off Kanagawa was a meme long before the term was coined. In 2009, photographer Chris Jordan added his name to the list of artists to homage Hokusai’s masterwork in his series, Running the Numbers, where he uses data about various global phenomena to generate images from art history. Adding new meaning to the phrase “pictures of the floating world,” Jordan transforms “2.4 million pieces of plastic, equal to the estimated number of pounds of plastic pollution that enter the world’s oceans every hour” into the form of The Great Wave. Go to his website and click on the image, the zoom effect is reminiscent of the the Eames’ Powers of Ten video and helps to put the sheer quantity of trash into perspective.

Chris Jordan, Gyre, 8×11 feet in three vertical panels, 2009.

If you’re wondering, a gyre is a large system of ocean currents. No doubt, Jordan’s piece is using The Great Wave to reference the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. Check out the detail below to see a close up of the image above…


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Categories: Artwork

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