To make an impact, "It's gotta be big." Words of truth spoken by artist Angela Haseltine Pozzi, whose latest environmental art project is on display at the Marine Mammal Center. Larger than life jellyfish, turtles, seals, fish, squid, and oil spills overlook the Pacific ocean from which they were inspired, and salvaged.
In an effort to educate on the looming pollution crisis caused by plastic, Pozzi led hundreds of volunteers on the southern coast of Oregon to gather, wash, sort, and construct giant oceanic sculptures out of trash. Washed Ashore is a touring exhibit teaching people about the perils of plastic in the marine environment.
The sculptures beckon to be touched — go ahead. A layer of bottles sit atop an expansive musical starfish that you can play. The interactiveness of the pieces bring in a fun element. Alongside the sculptures are factoid signs about the featured creature and everyday tips on how you can help; like carrying reusable totes, traveling with reusable water bottles (especially at the airport where plastic bottles are overpriced), and rinsing out those Flip Cup cups for reuse (I put that one in there).
The courtyard of the Center hosts most, but be sure to tour towards the back where the patients are. Currently, you can have a peek at rescued California sea lions and northern fur seals. If you're lucky, one will talk to you. Harbor seals are out of sight since they're sensitive little guys. Interested in volunteering? Do it.
Far from trashy, this exhibit celebrates the preservation of our lives aquatic. With free admission, docent-led tours, and fun for the whole fam, make a day out of it; hike the surrounding Sausalito hills, surf Rodeo beach, just be sure to collect any evil plastic you run into along the way.
Samantha Durbin (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a lifestyle writer who honed her blogging skills as Editor of FabSugar.com. Samantha graduated from The Fashion Institute of Technology, and also writes for San Francisco magazine and Gilt City.