On exhibit for the first time in Southwest Florida, Naples Zoo presents “Washed Ashore: Art to Save the Sea” from November 17, 2018 through April 21, 2019. Made entirely of plastic debris collected from beaches, the colorful and dramatic sculptures of marine animals represent the more than 315 billion pounds of plastic in oceans today and underscore the need for wildlife conservation.
Naples Zoo will showcase eleven larger-than-life sculptures of marine life. Zoo guests are invited to get up close to view the sculptures, look inside the mouth of an 11-foot-long shark and stand alongside a 16-foot-long parrot fish, find all of the legs of an 8-foot-wide octopus and look up to an 11-foot-tall polar bear. This exhibit is free with paid Zoo admission.
“Washed Ashore: Art to Save the Sea aligns perfectly with our mission to inspire people of all ages to respect, value, and help conserve wildlife and the natural world” said Jack Mulvena, Naples Zoo President and CEO. “While elaborate and captivating, these sculptures are a powerful reminder of human impacts and our personal responsibility to help preserve the biodiversity of our planet.”
“Washed Ashore: Art to Save the Sea” was founded by Angela Haseltine Pozzi, an artist and teacher from Oregon. Her passion for protecting the oceans led her to create this project with the goal of educating a global audience about plastic pollution in oceans and waterways and spark positive changes in consumer habitats. Since the project began in 2010, thousands of pounds of trash have been removed from beaches. That trash was then processed into more than 70 works of art, which travel the country to raise awareness about the plight of the world’s oceans and marine life.
All of the sculptures are of animals that are affected by plastic pollution. The 11 pieces coming to Naples Zoo are a sea star, shark, polar bear, penguin, two whale tails, seal, octopus, a parrot fish, and a trigger fish. Each piece is carefully created, with a specific message. For example, the seal piece is made of a variety of lids, buoys, netting, and wheels to represent that seals can become entangled in nets, ropes, and rubber rings or directly ingest bits of plastic.
Pozzi will be visiting Naples Zoo on November 15, 2018 to speak at Naples Zoo’s Conservation Lecture Series. The event will be from 6 pm – 8 pm. Naples Zoo members get in free and general admission is $10 at the door. Click here to RSVP. Naples Zoo will also feature camps and education programs designed to teach on the importance of reducing plastic use and protecting the natural world.
About “Washed Ashore: Art to Save the Sea” Based in Bandon, Ore., the Washed Ashore Project is a non-profit dedicated to educating and creating awareness about marine debris and plastic pollution through art. “Washed Ashore: Art to Save the Sea” is a traveling exhibit that has been featured at different locations throughout the country.