Based in Madison, Wisconsin, Hongtao Zhou observed that when the school year drew to a close, a wide selection of household goods took to the streets, in vast numbers. The artist started to save broken chairs from the dumpsters, binding their parts with belts to create bull heads, explaining, "They demonstrate the cruel reality human generated: we are no longer a part of our eco system. We are destroying the environment and in effect, consuming life. ... We may not recognize them in front of us every day, but we have untold connections throughout our lives patterned by our daily consumption of products. The cowboy is a symbolic image of America; almost everyone the world over now regards the cowboy as a role model. People want to achieve this materialized American dream in China, India, Brazil and so many other countries. I believe everyone has the right to dream, but if this is not a mode of sustainability environmentally, morally, or economically. We must change."
Artist: Hongtao Zhou
Reconstituted will be shown at the Memorial Union Porter Butts Gallery in Madison, Wisconsin through May 24, 2011.