Published: June 19, 2011
PopDogs is a public art installation and public forum by Carlo Sampietro that addresses dog overpopulation.
The artist confronts this important issue by exposing viewers to the psychological cycle of craving, consumption and abandonment that happens when an object of desire becomes unwanted.
Italian-born artist Sampietro presents PopDogs, a giant popcorn machine that appears to spew out toy dogs at an alarming rate, to mimic the birth rate of real dogs worldwide. As visitors arrive, they are confronted with a cascade of toys spilling out of the PopDogs machine and onto the floor. Viewers cannot help but connect with this absurd spectacle focusing on the millions of domestic animals that come into the world and are subsequently abandoned, ignored, or destroyed—the sheer volume is clearly unsustainable.
The installation also includes a workshop where kids can paint dog toys and learn about the responsibilities of dog ownership. Experts in the fields of animal sheltering and pet care participate in a public forum
This forum is intended to function as a conversation starter—a judgment-free and informative environment in which viable solutions to dog overpopulation issues can be discussed.
Sampietro’s goal is to exhibit PopDogs in New York, Paris, Shanghai, Sao Paulo and Mecico City; all cities in which dog overpopulation has caused unique set of challenges and dilemmas.