Single-use food packaging is one of the major contributors to the plastic crisis that we are currently encountering. In the 1840’s Anna Atkins famously created cyanotypes to document British Algae, and by ironically employing the same photographic process first used to record the natural world, this work highlights how deeply plastic is ingrained into today’s society. As a conscientious consumer, the artist has documented each piece of non-recyclable food packaging she has been unable to avoid, over an extended period.
The title Venenum Victu is Latin for ‘poison diet’ and refers both to the deadly effect of plastic on the Earth and the potentially deadly chemical that forms part of the compound needed to produce cyanotype prints. This different take on environmental photography intends to provoke the viewer to think about their own environmental impact.