Unedited conversations between artist in a productive critique discovering thesis and processes behind the work.
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Oil on Canvas
18 x 25"
Guerrier: so, you have been painting
Ramos: yes, almost nine months
Guerrier: it has been a while since i was in your studio. the images on your site are all new to me
especially, the works referencing the digestive system
Ramos: you saw some of the work with the body/building suit,
Guerrier: this one
Body Suit Study, 2010
Mixed Media, 8.5 x 11"
Collaboration with Angela Diaz
Guerrier: is Systems the most recent piece?
Guerrier: it seems to want to link water usage to our larger landscape
i hear speak on that subject
Ramos: it does, in this case used water
Miami takes our used water through a chemical process and then dumps it 3 miles off the beach
Guerrier: i forgot the term used by the water management for reclaimed water
Ramos: hmm, we have gray waters, blackwaters, ..recycled water?
i think reclaimed is correct
Guerrier: gray, brown and reclaimed
Ramos: theres blackwater
Guerrier: which is?
Ramos: from our toilets
Guerrier: what about the process of injecting water back into the aquifer?
Ramos: ouch yes that's a painful one
i understand it is for storage
and aquifer replenishment
Ramos: i see what you mean... there are also cases in which blackwater is injected into the aquifers
Guerrier: no, disgusting.
we have generally good water management here
Ramos: you think so?
Guerrier: i do. i have not read anything damning of the South Florida water management
even, in national water discussion, they are lauded
but they aren't full in charge
Ramos: did you know that 47 million gallons of biomass was dumped in our waters between 2009 and 2011?
or that only 5% of our beach waters meet the national standards
Guerrier: no. but where did this happen?
beach water is a federal/state issue. no?
Ramos: "Of particular concern: a nearly $600 million reconstruction of the trouble-prone plant on Virginia Key, where four spills over just three months in 2011 dumped some 19 million gallons of waste water into Biscayne Bay."
Guerrier: spill over aren't policy or the norm
the article raised questions about long term plan
Ramos: if it was nuclear waste that wouldn't be the case
spills are a big deal
regardless, we "process" the water and dump it in the ocean
Guerrier: we don't
Ramos: three miles away
yes we do...
and fishermen go there to fish because the fish are attracted to the particles
then we eat the fish
Guerrier: the system for water treatment is more than that
it may include that
but it is not exclusively that
that matters, because we do need sustainable solutions
for our long term water problems
Ramos: "The treated effluent is discharged via an ocean outfall located three miles off the coast. Sludge is produced at this plant in addition to the sludge conveyed from the North District Wastewater Treatment Plant."
Miami-Dade County Water a& Sewer Infrastructure Report, June 2012 at p. 30.
Guerrier: i think your paintings offer an image of well-integrated systems
Ramos: I am trying to live in the solution as opposed to depicting the problem
Guerrier: i do think there are oblivious folks out there who do not think about water systems
symptoms of bad policy tend to hide the core problem of water source, delivery, usage, treatment and re-integration
i am very sure the Miami Herald article paints a true picture
but i also read of poor leadership and delayed decisions that tend to complicated things for the future
Ramos: i think its fair to say we are all doing the best we can
there are tons of missed-opportunities
and it is tough for monopolies to shift
water treatment can be making a lot of money from waste
the actual material
i would say it has potential to be the next oil
Guerrier: that's generous. we are not all on equal footing.
i think leadership is county and statewide is lacking
well that could be a solution. waste into money
Ramos: imagine if all gas stoves were powered by methane gas
Guerrier: images like this
Body Infrastructure Study, 2012
Mixed Media, 11 x 17"
Ramos: and all non-edible gardens and landscapes were grown on human compost - saving the good soil for food
water can be filtered and reused for all kind of things - no need to mix with salt water
desalination is way too expensive
Guerrier: offer sustainability and low use from the city sources
Ramos: exactly - low use from the city sources
might have to be grass roots
unplug little by little