Colleen Plumb

b. 1970

Colleen Plumb is a Chicago based artist who makes photographs and videos that explore the ambivalence and contradiction in our relationships with non-human animals. THIRTY TIMES A MINUTE is a public video projection that sheds light on captive elephants and explores how captivity functions as a symbol of persistent colonial thinking.

Since 2014, making the video, Plumb has traveled to over sixty zoos in the US and Europe, filming elephants exhibiting what biologists refer to as stereotypy, a behaviour only seen in captive animals that includes rhythmic rocking, swaying and head bobbing. These compulsive, repetitive movements cause debilitating damage to the animals feet and joints. Plumb practices a sort of guerrilla performance with her videos, setting up a portable projector, often powered by a battery pack, in urban and rural locations around the world. Focusing the work on buildings, mountains, barns or any other sort of sturcture, she documents the moment with a still photograph, as seen here. The projection often creates a moment of shared interaction with passers-by (and somtimes the authorities) and Plumb is able to engage in a conversation about her larger concerns for the well-being of these magnificent animals.

Colleen Plumb (b. 1970)
Drumbo (Vienna, Austria) at Brooklyn Bridge, New York City, 2016
archival pigment print, edition of 10
20 x 30 inches
#11812
Colleen Plumb (b. 1970)
Tempo (Berlin, Germany) at Ethical Society, Philadelphia, PA, 2017
archival pigment print, edition of 10
20 x 30 inches
#11813
Colleen Plumb (b. 1970)
Drumbo (Vienna, Austria) at Brooklyn Bridge, New York City, 2016
archival pigment print, edition of 10
20 x 30 inches
#11812
Colleen Plumb (b. 1970)
Tempo (Berlin, Germany) at Ethical Society, Philadelphia, PA, 2017
archival pigment print, edition of 10
20 x 30 inches
#11813
Colleen Plumb (b. 1970)
Spooky (Tulsa, Oklahoma) at King Ranch, Galisteo, NM, 2016
archival pigment print, edition of 10
20 x 30 inches
#11814
Colleen Plumb (b. 1970)
Joy (Greenville, South Carolina) at Kunsthaus Tacheles, Berlin, Germany, 2016
archival pigment print, edition of 10
20 x 30 inches
#11815
Colleen Plumb (b. 1970)
Gina (Memphis, Tennessee) at Cerrilos, NM, 2017
archival pigment print, edition of 10
20 x 30 inches
#11816
Colleen Plumb (b. 1970)
Rex (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma) at rue la Fayette, Paris, France, 2017
archival pigment print, edition of 10
20 x 30 inches
#11817
Colleen Plumb (b. 1970)
Doc (Syracuse, New York) at Hornafjordur, Iceland, 2018
archival pigment print, edition of 10
20 x 30 inches
#11818
Colleen Plumb (b. 1970)
Joy (Greenville, South Carolina) at Victor, Idaho, 2015
archival pigment print, edition of 10
20 x 30 inches
#11819
Colleen Plumb (b. 1970)
Tong Thai (Amsterdam, Netherlands) at Le Corbusier’s Carpenter Center for the the Visual Arts, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, 2019
archival pigment print, edition of 10
20 x 30 inches
#12339
Colleen Plumb (b. 1970)
Kelly (Baraboo, Wisconsin) at Museum of Jurassic Technology, Los Angeles, CA, 2018
archival pigment print, edition of 10
20 x 30 inches
#12338
Colleen Plumb (b. 1970)
Gina (Memphis, Tennessee) at Bethesda Terrace, Central Park, NY, 2016
archival pigment print, edition of 10
20 x 30 inches
#12337
Colleen Plumb (b. 1970)
Bamboo (Seattle, Washington) at Volkstheater, Vienna, Austria, 2016
archival pigment print, edition of 7
30 x 45 inches
#12336