Develop work for Napa Gallery's exhibition, "Endangered Species: the True Cost of Commodity Coffee," that encourages communication about consumers' roles and the consequences to our environment with regards to the specialty coffee value chain. Some studies indicate that by the year 2080 approximately 65 to 100 percent of land for coffee growth will be unsuitable for plant development due to global warming. In short, coffea arabica will be extinct. So, the goals were clear: establish communication with real actors in specialty coffee - those that understand the impact via regular interaction: farmers. And create designs that share their story and consequently reveals the consumer's impact on the environment by means of their consumption of the second most purchased commodity: coffee.
At its onset, it was necessary to determine whom to represent. Meticulous filtering resulted in less than five companies suitable for the project. Of those one company expressed interest in collaboration. So, numerous exchanges with Marco Ariz of the El Aguila Coffee Estate and Olympia Coffee Roasters led to the development of a thesis. Distilling the plethora of information into essential elements while also maintaining their identity was important. Therefore, things like national, sociocultural, and geographical identities were encouraged through color (those of the El Salvadorian flag), people (a montage of Ricardo Ariz and the townspeople he employs), symbols simultaneously tying to aid and assistance (think, Red Cross) and their Central American heritage, and location (a large 55.75" x 28.5" x 1.75" (deep) three-dimensional cutout and display of media into 3 layers that directly correspond to El Aguila's topography and an isometric projection of the farm).
Opening night of the exhibition included coffee service with coffee from the Ariz family farm, Finca El Aguila. Within the first 2 hours 46 cups of coffee were served and 20% of people who never drank coffee enjoyed the beverage for the first time in part owed to an entirely new experience that opened dialogue about coffee, our environment, and the people effected directly by it. When hanged, the dimensionality of the layered poster (printed on foam core substrate), successfully contributes to a reciprocal narrative that involves all of us in this seemingly single exchange, but with an emphasis on the potentially disastrous current state-of-affairs with regards to our environment.