“Plastic Fantastic” (2010) outside the Philadelphia Museum of Art (via diedrakrieger.com)

Today, we received a message in a plastic bottle from Philadelphia-based artist Deidra Krieger. Labeled with a neon-colored sticker with the word “PLAY” writ large, the bottle was covered with various handwritten messages, including”EMPTY POSTconsumer FANTASTIC PLASTIC” near the mouth of the bottle and “MAIL ART” all around. Inside, there were 10 “play” stickers and a “Certificate of Authenticity” — ours was numbered “004.”

The title of the work, the certificate mentioned, is “Water bottle from Plastic Fantastic,” and the piece of paper assured me that this is a certified artifact from the project (SCORE!):

Over 6000 water bottles were used to cover Plastic Fantastic’s 2-tier 16 foot geodesic dome at Art in the Open, Philadelphia, PA, 2010. 300 of the 6000 have been allocated certificates of authenticity as having been part of one of its first nine iterations from 2007 to 2010.

Krieger’s website has an explanation of what Fantastic Plastic is (hint: think relational aesthetics). I enjoyed getting a message in a bottle — there’s something beautifully arcane about this method of communication — and I enjoyed imagining what the postal carrier must’ve thought when they had to deliver this beat up plastic bottle to our mailbox.

For those in and near Philly, it’s worth mentioning that Kreiger — who looks mischievous in this photo I found on Libby Rossof’s Flickrstream — is also curating a show, Let’s Play Nice, that has its own colorful Tumblelog and is open until Saturday, April 16 at SINErgy Project Space + Gallery (2310 N. American Street, 3rd Floor, Philadelphia).

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Hrag Vartanian

Hrag Vartanian is editor-in-chief and co-founder of Hyperallergic. You can follow him at @hragv.