Cockadoodle-doo! – Bordallo II installs his “Plastic Rooster” in downtown New Bedford

Cockadoodle-doo! – Bordallo II instals his “Plastic Rooster” in downtown New Bedford


Ocean in a Drop, Published June 20, 2024
Full article HERE.

This noble beast is “Plastic Rooster.” Peripatetic Portuguese artist Bordalo II installed him in New Bedford last week as part of Massachusetts Design Art and Technology Institute’s (DATMA) “TRANSFORM: Reduce, Revive, Reimagine” 2024 public art programming. The piece stands proudly outside the YMCA.

Bordalo’s murals and monumental sculptures around the world focus on conservation and waste. The critters he makes, such as this cocky fellow (who is nearly 20 feet tall), are constructed by fabricators according to the artist’s design. In this case, those fabricators were 11th-grade Metal Fabrication students from the Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational Technical High School.

After that steel and wood structure is installed, Bordalo arrives to put on what he calls “the skin,” concocted from refuse gathered by local communities. “Plastic Rooster” includes nautical debris, plastic traffic cones, street signs, and this drainage pipe DATMA’s executive director Lindsay Mis collected from a neighbor.

When I was there, Bordalo was buzzing with a small saw through bright pink plastic traffic tones, like a manicurist preparing false nails, which he applied to the rooster’s feet. Here’s this week’s Working Artist story in the Globe.

And a programming note: I’m taking a short break for a deep breath, so there will be no essay on Sunday, and no Work in Progress next Tuesday. I’ll be back soon, after I exhale. Thank you, my friends, for reading, sharing, and supporting Ocean in a drop. See you soon!