Shower curtains can sometimes do more than stop your shower water from flooding your bathroom.
According to the American Water Works Association, an average American uses up to 12,000 gallons of water every year in the toilet. Now, that is a ludicrous amount of precious water going down the drain, literally. And with water scarcity becoming a very real problem for all of humanity in the near future, it seems only natural that we should try and find out ways in which water can be conserved.
This is exactly what Elisabeth Buecher, a textile-based designer and educator from London, did as part of her shower curtain installation. Developed under the art project “My Shower is a Green Warrior,” Buchner created a unique shower curtain – one which turns into a wall of spikes after four minutes of water usage.
The shower curtain comprises long and sharp inflatable spikes which inflate after four minutes of usage, pushing the user (amicably) out of the shower.
So water-wasters, beware! Because the eco-warrior water saver is here, and it’s been nicknamed “Spiky.”
Elisabeth Buecher has spoken openly about the intentions behind her shower curtain, emphasizing that the project aims to instigate a debate concerning water conservation rather than to become a best-selling item, Metro reported.
“These curtains are not really for marketing but aim at provoking a debate around water issues… If you don’t want to get trapped you have to get out before it does and stop damaging the environment.”
Certainly, then, the spiky shower curtain is not just a marketing gimmick, but a planned intervention by the artist. It speaks at the sub-textual level that if we are not careful enough to save water, we will be the ones who will be trapped when there is a scarcity.
This project also lends to the larger debate concerning water usage in bathrooms in general, and the much-debated point of whether baths are better than showers. According to Slate, taking baths is almost always a better option than showers simply because showers tend to use much more water. The report states that an average person stays in the shower for more than eight minutes, inevitably leading to considerable water-wastage.
It is here where the ingenious shower curtain developed by Buecher comes into the picture, significantly reducing the amount of time one spends in the shower. Spiky, as the clever shower curtain has become known, is a gentle reminder that it is not necessary to take eight minutes to shower, and the shower curtain merely emphasizes the point with its “smart” design.
If Spiky were available for sale, would you have it fitted into your bathroom?