Thank you, Saint Anthony
“Instead of finding it depressing that there’s all this waste–there are all these things that get thrown off, these lost objects–imagining a new scenario where perhaps [they are] not necessarily waste, but they are elements of a new emergence of life.”
– David Bayus
Written by Danielle Grant:
David Bayus’s work is a cross-disciplinary practice centered around experimental film-making with a focus on the increasingly convergent relationships between spirituality, technology, and crisis. Thank You, Saint Anthony is a new video and sculpture installation inspired by the rhyming Catholic prayer: “Saint Anthony, Saint Anthony, please come around. Something is lost and needs to be found!” Often spoken by Bayus’s grandmother when looking for something, the incantation acts as the conceptual foundation for his residency at Recology.
In his video installation, Bayus creates a theatrical series of beach-side vignettes where life emerges anew from a primordial ocean of synthetic fibers, micro plastics, and lost objects. As evolving biomass encroaches the coastline, a newly formed sentience–sitting in the middle of a new eden–has the privilege to be the first of its kind to get the blues.
As in the artist’s previous exhibitions, the forms created in his virtual environments ultimately make their way into the real world and the viewer is presented with Bayus’s newest sculptural work. Focusing on one single object sourced from the San Francisco waste stream, Bayus explores the anthropomorphic distinctions between a “found” and a “saved” object, between serendipity and salvation, and between evolution and intelligent design.