Beeswax is a particularly long-lasting material. Samples recovered from thousands of years ago are nearly indistinguishable from fresh beeswax. If it decays, it’s decay is imperceptible. Insects don’t seem to want to eat it. Kept from excessive heat, the lifespan of beeswax is indefinite. These works by Pedro Wirz (Brazilian, born 1981) feature a few different objects—mostly toy cars, but also toy airplanes and cement casts of eggs and other shapes—set in beeswax. Wirz frames the works using scraps of wood wrapped in fabric rags.
Beeswax is an ideal material for Wirz, whose works emerge from a nexus of natural history and ecological catastrophe. Wirz has worked extensively with organic materials including rocks, dirt, hair, and twigs. Wirz uses these materials to explore the conceptual implications of deep time beyond the human capacity for understanding, reframing human experience as a fragment of a larger scientific and supernatural history. Beeswax, with its longue durée, reveals in these works the presence of multiple timescales--the eternity of the wax, the lifecycle of the toys, the limited lifespan of the vehicles they represent, and the potential futures embodied by the enigmatic cement eggs that have been scattered throughout the compositions.