Dale Rothenberg

            There are some things you need to know about me before looking at the work on this website. As the card states, my function is  MUSICIAN   . I have always had a passion for music, and I still do. I was into high school jazz band the way other kids were into football or swimming. When I went to college, it was for piano, and when I graduated without plans to move to New York or Chicago, I began looking for other places where I could use my skills.

            The mystery of cruise ship contracts became a growing allure, and soon I had auditioned and signed a contract to perform on the Oasis of the Seas for four months. It ended up being a pretty awful few months of my life, but ultimately revealed a world to me that I had not considered. Almost two years later, I was offered a brief fill-in on another ship, and took it. I found it to be a completely different experience, and I started envisioning a way to focus some kind of visual practice on the nature of cruise ships: how they are able to exist so unsustainably, and the problems faced by an expanding global tourism industry in the wake of a growing number of environmental atrocities.

                I’m not interested in slander; to dismiss my work as such would be an improper characterization. Perhaps there is a way through imagery and writing to discuss issues related to globalization. This includes the white-washing of culturally significant ports, which now sport identical-looking outposts of Margaritaville, Diamonds International, and Señor Frog’s. This includes the purchasing of small islands from the Bahamian government to use as private resorts because criminal activity in Nassau and Freeport gives tourists anxiety. This includes the redistribution of a fleet of busses from up to six hours away to the cruise port when a ship comes in, because the money is so valuable to the locals. It’s the lingering effects of looking at the poorer economies of the world as a means to keep as much of the profit as possible, while the ships are flunking health inspections, sailing into hurricanes, and incurring millions of dollars in environmental fines.

                Anyway, I am pretty focused on examining these kinds of issues through a visual medium. I’m working towards a master’s degree in visual art in Bergen, Norway. Bergen was always one of my favorite ports, and I told myself I’d move there if I ever stopped traveling. So here I am. For now.

If you have more questions, you can contact me.