Robi Smith is a community-engaged artist working principally on coastal ecosystem and climate impact themes. Robi will introduce her work-in-progress Inland: An Unnatural History and invite crowd-sourced “found object” contributions across the duration of the Ocean Festival. She will also create a site-specific installation made from the collected “specimens,” encouraging people to explore the waterways in their local community and look closely for a small object that, if not collected, could end up travelling all the way to the ocean.
Patricipants will be invited to record their observations of the object as though they were a scientist, noting the location the object was found, distinguishing characteristics of the site, and any observations about the object itself, and then mail in their finds for incorporation into an eventual art installation. “Finds” could include found debris such as single-use plastics, food and drink packaging materials, fishing line, clothing, fashion accessories, footwear, disposable masks and gloves, and more.
Robi Smith’s work is featured in site-specific commissions (the BC Children’s Hospital pediatric surgery unit, Vancity Credit Union South Burnaby Branch). She is the recipient of multiple artist grants and a fellowship from the Earthwatch Institute to create artwork about the diversity of plants, animals, birds, and insects that support salmon-bearing streams in Washington State. She holds a Master of Education in Arts for Social Change from Simon Fraser University.