Breathing Aluminum

Student | Nina Baratelli
Faculty | Michael Sekor
School of Liberal Arts and Science, Undergraduate Math and Science

The process of extracting aluminum from the Earth’s crust has a higher energy cost and produces more pollutants than recycling aluminum; using found aluminum expresses the idea of upcycling materials, while the aluminum pop-tab mask ironically “protects” from inhaling these pollutants. Aluminum is 100% recyclable, and the mask is contrived solely from aluminum, to be taken to a recycling center and aid in closing the life-cycle loop of aluminum.

Nina Baratelli, Breathing Aluminum, self portrait, 2020