These miniature granaries, that derive from the Han dynasty (206 BC – 220 AD) used as funerary items for the afterlife, provoke questions related to contemporary food production systems and food security. The Han period is known for innovative modular production methods—ceramic production included. This granary series however, while borrowing from these modular methods, is made of post-consumer plastics. The color variation comes from the random mixing of plastics during its re-manufacture. While following a repeated production template, each granary — as with Han production — is unique in detail. Additionally, much of this plastic is twice recycled having been previously used in a public sculpture Ground Cover, also by Peterman, that continues to function as an open-air public dancefloor in Chicago. Replaced plastic floor boards showing signs of excessive wear — many having been danced upon for 15 years — serve as primary material stock for producing these granaries. This plastic material, recognizable in many of Peterman’s projects, serves as a petro-chemical marker of the peak oil moment we are living in. As with all plastics these objects are capable of spanning centuries, and being unearthed, like ceramic, bronze and stone artifacts, thousands of years in the future—carrying with them a resonant link between a long gone agrarian culture and our current ecological dilemmas.
Granary models made from recycled plastic material
Each ca. 45 x 36 x 21 cm
Signed and numbered certificate