Images courtesy of ©Tamsin Drury
This space is a public space, it is a collaborative space, it is a place for meditation and relief, it is an archive of human waste that only one person may occupy at a time. It is a public (compost) toilet.
I would like to offer Hazard Festival a service. Public toilets are in decline and so is Latrinalia ( a.k.a Toilet graffiti). St Anns Square has long since lost access to its Victorian underground public toilet so I would like to bring a temporary public toilet back to the space with a difference.
The toilet will be open to the public and participants of Hazard and will take the form of a large box painted white on the inside and hazard stripes on the outside. With one compost toilet, participants are invited to occupy the toilet space, deposit their ‘waste’ and add to the graffiti on the walls using paint and permanent markers in hazard colours.
It is outrageous how much water and good compost-able faeces we waste every time we flush the toilet. The compost toilet uses no water and is completely self sufficient. There is a simple separator system that separates the urine and excrement into separate sections - one bottle, one bucket. This means that the excrement remains dry, keeps it shape and does not smell. As nothing is flushed away this piece explores the compost toilet as a collection, an archive of people's excrement.
The Victorians would only have one single public toilet and this was for men only in order to keep the women under control so they could never be far from the home. In response, this installation will only be one single toilet, but with no gender specification. This is at one moment a homage to the public toilet and also an action against a gender binary often enforced by public toilets.
I will be the toilet attendant dressed in a suite and yellow Marigolds, handing out flyers letting people know they are able to use the public toilet. I will make sure people have what they need and the toilet is maintained.
This piece sits between public art and public toilets. It looks at the practicality of art and challenges people's relationship to their excrement.