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LIFE IN PLASTIC

Hiya, Barbie Hi, Ken You want to go for a ride? Sure, Ken Jump in



Life in plastic, it’s fantastic - do you remember this famous line of possibly one of the most artistically challenging songs of the 90’? The text referred sarcastically to various aspects of our life, but if I honestly think of my days back then as a child - life in plastic was indeed fantastic.


I store beautiful memories of plastic objects creating my everyday reality. Like this huge 2,5-liter plastic juice bottle that we could finally buy for the entire family. No more little, heavy or expensive ones. Juice for everyone in one bottle only! One that we could empty and then fill up with homemade juice or water to carry during our long walks. So much lighter and practical.


Little did we know about recycling and its effects on the environment. We were welcoming easiness and progress in our lives. That’s how it all begins after all, isn’t it? Plastic spread like everything that embodies practicality, slowly becoming one of the most negative characters in the sustainability history of mankind.


We are in Anno Domini 2022. No Hiya Barbie… on radio. I decide to keep my good memories, minimise plastic consumption, be responsible for disposing it in the right bin and tell you another microstory in the name of macroacting.


Life In Plastic

Material: small plastic bottle, cardboard, magazine stripes, silicon bubbles, little shell, dried tomato stem

Size: 0.075m x 0.04m x 0.028m



Did you know that... 💡

The same piece of plastic can only be recycled up to 2-3 times before its quality decreases to the point where it can no longer be used. Additionally, each time plastic is recycled, virgin material is added to help “upgrade” its quality. So when you read the label “recycled material,” think twice about what the word “recycled” actually means in that context.*


Not all plastics are equal when it comes to reusing and recycling. PET (polyethylene terephthalate) is one of the most easily and commonly recycled one. Thanks to its transparency, rigidity, and non-toxicity, it is suitable for health and hygiene products, food containers and medical equipment. PET is also widely used as a fiber for clothing under the name ‘Polyester’ in the textile industry.


Other commonly recycled plastics are HDPE (high density polyethylene), which is often used for milk and shampoo bottles, and PP (polypropylene), used for tubs and ready meal trays due to its high melting point.


PVC is one of the easiest plastics to manufacture and one of the hardest to recycle at the same time. Different forms of PVC contain additives, and current recycling technology cannot effectively separate them from the original plastic.

Other plastics that are difficult to recycle include LDPE (low density polyethylene), which is popular for making food bags, and PS (polystyrene) that is often used to make plastic cutlery.**



Take-away 📚

Nearly all plastics are produced from chemicals derived from oil, natural gas and coal, which all contribute to climate change. If current trends continue, by 2050 the plastic industry could account for 20% of the world’s total oil consumption. *


The biggest concern nowadays is single-use plastic. Besides recycling correctly, we can start using alternatives like reusable metal straws or bee’s wax wraps for food storage. Shopping local also makes a difference. The less distance fresh products have to travel, the less packaging it requires to stay edible. If possible, choose products based on new technologies like PLA - an alternative to PET in plastic cups and bottles, made from plant sugars without a drop of crude oil. **



Related topics to reflect on 🤔

  • Growing demand for biodegradable plastic

  • Return / Refill plastic stations in the cities

  • Dirty plastic might end up in landfills

  • Tougher rules for single-use plastic shopping bags and plastic cutlery



More #microinspirations 🧚

Win a BBQ Party 20%

Material: pieces of broken frame, cardboard, magazine stripe, broken cup

Size: 0.065m x 0.035m x 0.02m


areyouteasingme?

Material: cardboard, plastic bottle patches and plastic stoppers

Size: 0.11m x 0.135 x 0.02m


Snowdrops (lat: Galanthus)

Material: cardboard, plastic bottle patches and stoppers, dried flowers

Size: 0.8m x 0.08m x 0.025m




Inspired? 🤏 ♻️

Can't wait to #microart with us? Extract material or an object worth reminding us all about, create a #microstory around it, and send it via email. The stage of our art blog and social media is yours!




Back to 90' - Aqua, Barbie Girl

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*) https://www.zurich.com

**) https://www.conserve-energy-future.com

***) https://blog.nationalgeographic.org