It's not every weekend you get to help save the earth and hang out on a brand-new trilevel 200-foot yacht, but due to a unique collaboration between Greenpeace and queer organization MIX NYC, I recently enjoyed this privilege.
In an unexpected partnership, MIX NYC - producers of the New York Queer Experimental Film Festival, now in its 24th year - was hired by Greenpeace to create two installations for their new boat, the Rainbow Warrior III, turning a tent on the helipad and "the mess" (the dining area) into a gorgeous jungle of repurposed materials.
"People have preconceptions of Greenpeace, but it's a constantly evolving organization," says Greenpeace media officer James Turner. "That's part of why this collaboration is so nice for us." Despite the group's largely straight reputation, Turner says, Greenpeace strives to be "an open and inclusive organization." "We have good LGBT representation both in our offices and our ship crews [including] several staff members in the US and on our ships who identify as queer," says Turner. "We are serious about dealing with injustice in whatever form it takes - it's just that our primary mission is the environment."
The installations re-used discarded synthetic materials from city agency Materials for the Arts, which recommended MIX NYC as a possible candidate for the project. Diego Montoya, designer for the space, feels the recycled materials reflect not just earth-friendly principles but also the MIX aesthetic: repurposing, reimagining, experimental. "We created a jungle; we mimic nature with these things that are counter-nature," said Montoya. Materials included cellophane, used and donated fabrics, rolls of "anti-sequins" (the sparkly fabric left over from sequin production), and even discarded costumes from Broadway's The Lion King.
More pictures and information after the jump.