It is all too easy for the new generations to demonise industry, its policies and means of production without acknowledging its merits: the construction of today’s society, the development and evolution of technology and of small and large towns such as Scunthorpe, a village in Lincolnshire, England, which a few days ago hosted the latest work by Dan Rawlings that reflects on these very issues.
Born in Watford in 1979, Dan Rawlings is an English artist, famous all over the world for his works created using the plasma cutting technique. From fire extinguishers to road signs and immersive installations, his creations are surprising in their technique and originality.
For the 20th Visual Arts Centre, the artist created Future Returns, a huge installation inside Scunthorpe Church. Dan Rawlings has worked on one of those classic oil trucks, plasma-cutting it and transforming the tanker into a tree-lined tunnel.
While the effect is stunning during the day, at night, when it is dark, the work is only lit in certain places and enhanced by smoke, giving the illusion of being in the middle of a forest.
With Future Returns, Dan Rawlings wants to remind us of the importance of industry, but also of the responsibility that companies, and especially oil companies, must take to improve the situation of our planet and the quality of our lives.