Krewe of Dead Pelicans
In May 2010, as oil from the Deepwater Horizon disaster continued to spread in the Gulf of Mexico, growing outrage from residents in New Orleans at the response by government agents and corporate executives, opened up new horizons of political possibility. Ro Mayer, a real estate agent and costume designer who exhibited work in the Multispecies Salon (pictured below), was one of those residents who were unexpectedly swept up in the revolutionary momentum generated by the disaster.
Along with some of her artist and costume designer friends, Mayer began planning a parade to mourn the loss of life in the BP disaster. The parade was a mock “jazz funeral”—a traditional New Orleans commemoration of the deceased—that would mourn the ending of life but also celebrated its passage into the next world.
As oil vapors continued to waft through the city of New Orleans—mixing with the sweet pervasive smell of spring jasmine to create a pungent, sickening odor—hundreds of people began to RSVP via Facebook for the upcoming funeral procession. Collective outrage, and modest hopes, settled on this future event. Mayer became the drum major for a group she called the ‘Krewe of Dead Pelicans’.
[This project is spotlighted on the multispecies salon website, a platform and organization dedicated to thought, art and action that fosters interspecies awareness, collaboration and respect].