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Washed Ashore: Plastics, Sealife and Art

Whale skelton made of plastic bottles

Updated October, 8, 2012.

As many of us know, today’s marine life is threatened by the multitude of plastics that make their way into our oceans and endanger sea creatures and their habitats. Artist and educator Angela Haseltine Pozzi understands this reality all too well and as a result, began an amazing project to not only showcase the types of trash found within our oceans, but also to encourage individuals to think twice before polluting our environment.

“The Washed Ashore community project aims to educate and create awareness about marine debris and plastic pollution in art.” It began in Oregon after hundreds of volunteers collected over 7,000 pounds of trash in order to create larger-than-life sculptures. This clean-up event brought people together to create awareness about the problems that marine debris causes. There are fifteen huge sculptures in total! Some include a coral reef made completely from Styrofoam, jellyfish created from plastic bottles, and a giant, musical sea star.

Henry the fish, made of assorted plastic pieces that volunteers collected and sorted by color.

Since Washed Ashore debuted in Oregon, it has started a global tour to teach communities to change their potentially hazardous bad habits. Today, you can find it at the the Living Coast Discovery Center in Chula Vista! Not only will you be able to witness these gigantic sculptures first-hand, but you’ll also have the opportunity to listen to special guest speakers and participate in field trips and art workshops. It’s an interactive and fun way to learn about how human interaction can be detrimental to our oceans.

The ILACSD Staff visited the exhibit and posed in front of “Lidia” a seal made mostly of plastic lids found on Oregon’s shores.

The ultimate hope for the Washed Ashore project is global action “to create a stream of events, discussions and awareness that lead to active solutions.” The exhibit has been extended and will be on display through September 3rd, 2012 at the Living Coast Discovery Center located at 1000 Gunpowder Point Drive in Chula Vista. We encourage you to check out the fun and visit for more information.