Tracey Clement, ‘Banquet,’ installed in at the Coal Loader Centre for Sustainability as a finalist in the North Sydney Art Prize, 2-17 March 2019, sugar, glass, laundry soap, dimensions variable.

The word banquet implies abundance, but also gluttony and greed. Like much of my recent work, Banquet uses the symbol of the ruined city to highlight the impact of an anthropocentric worldview.

(Before) Tracey Clement, ‘Banquet,’ 27 February 2019, sugar, glass, laundry soap.

The brutalist towers of Banquet are made from sugar cubes. Perched on fancy cut crystal glassware, they are flooded with laundry soap. They tilt, crash and dissolve over time.

(After) Tracey Clement, ‘Banquet,’ 2 March 2019, sugar, glass, laundry soap.

Sugar is sweet, but it is also addictive – another white powder. The toxic legacy of the sugar industry (driven by our mass consumption) ranges from slavery to bleached coral on the Great Barrier Reef. And as the bright blue laundry detergent in this sculpture undermines the foundations of the city, it is a reminder that what goes down the drain ends up in our rivers and oceans. All of our actions have implications for an environment with which we are inexplicably entwined.

Banquet is part of my ongoing series of miniature cities.