ROCKLAND — Plastic Bag Store: The Film will be screened in the parking lot adjacent to the Strand Theatre on Thursday, August 11, at 8 p.m. The film is based on a public art installation and immersive film experience by Brooklyn-based artist Robin Frohardt that uses humor, inventive puppetry, and a critical lens to question our culture of consumption and convenience. The screening is part of the Strand’s New Century Series.
Plastic Bag Store: The Film follows Helen, a custodian at the Metropolitan Museum. Helen bristles when she finds that a plastic cup has been left by a museum-goer next to one of the august Greek antiquities. When her shift ends, she takes the cup with her, and thoughtfully gathers other litter as she journeys home. We follow Helen's trash on an ironic and imaginative journey through time, and are challenged to consider how we (and our plastic) might be misinterpreted by future generations.
The film is based on Robin Frohardt's site-specific installation-cum-puppetry-show of the same name. Designed to look like a real grocery store and set in a storefront, visitors to The Plastic Bag Store installation were quickly confronted with the fact that all the products were actually made from recycled plastic bags and single use plastics, harvested from the garbage bins of New York City. The installation opened in March 2020 with a major premiere in the heart of New York’s Times Square but was soon shut down by the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to a Strand Theatre news release, Frohardt's decision to make a film transformed her vision for the project.
“I never imagined how perfectly the medium of film would capture the story as I see it in my head,” said Frohardt, in the release. “We found a way to integrate the film into the installation for a hybrid live experience... which has made The Plastic Bag Store viable in these unique times."
With the new integration of film, The Plastic Bag Store was able to reopen to reduced-capacity audiences in Times Square in November 2020, which earned it a place on the New York Times’ list of Best Theater for the year, calling it “vital and intoxicating”. Plastic Bag Store: The Film captures the experience of the installation.
From 6 - 8 p.m., at the same outdoor location, the free workshop Plastic Bag Fashion: Workshop & Runway will offer an opportunity to create fashion with recycled plastic bags. Artist Kim Bernard will inspire participants to conceive and construct upcycled wearables, adornments and accessories using colorful plastic bags, tape and hot glue. The designers are then invited to model their upcycled wearables (or have a friend model) at the Plastic Bag Fashion Runway immediately prior to the film screening at 8pm. No registration is necessary, all materials will be provided, all ages are welcome, and participants will get free admission to the film screening.
The Strand Theatre’s New Century Series explores new works, new artists, and new spaces, bringing live theatre, dance and innovative cinema works to the midcoast. The series pushes the boundaries of what’s been on offer at the theater before, both in content and presentation format. Up next in the series is the dark musical comedy EDGAR ALLAN which will be presented at the Lincoln Street Center in Rockland on Sept. 1 at 7pm.
The film is recommended for all ages. Running time is 60 minutes. Tickets are $10/General Admission, and are available at www.rocklandstrand.com, by calling 207-594-0070, or at the gate.
Audience members must bring their own chairs.
Strand concessions will be available.
Rain location is in the theater. The Strand Theatre is located at 345 Main Street, Rockland.