Five tons of reclaimed plastic waste has been used to construct a massive plastic whale that is currently jumping out of a canal in Belgium. This is a part of the 2018 Bruges Triennial. STUDIOKCA, the architecture, and design firm is responsible for making the impressive sculpture and aims to bring attention to the amount of plastic waste in the oceans.
“We proposed collecting as much plastic waste out of the oceans that we could in 4 months, and shaping that waste into Skyscraper, an almost 4 story tall whale pushing out of one of Bruges’ main canals, and arching over historic Jan Van Eyck Square at the city’s center,” the team writes describing the genesis of the project.
Hawaii Wildlife Fund joined forces with the firm in order to gather the plastic waste from beach clean-ups in order to make the plastic whale. It took four months to collect the five tons of waste. The waste consists of a variety of items ranging from toilet seats to car bumpers.
Even though the firm has had several projects before to raise awareness about plastic waste, this is the most ambitious project until now. 400 square feet of plastic waste was first cleaned, then sorted, and finally attached to a wire mesh covering an aluminum and steel structure. The plastic whale was initially constructed in Brooklyn but was then disassembled into 107 parts and transported to Bruges where it was reconstructed on site.
This is not only brilliant engineering and an aesthetic piece to look at, it serves a greater purpose of pointing out the huge volume of plastic waste that is swimming around the oceans and it is estimated that there is still 150 million tons of plastic waste in the ocean even right now. We really need to be more considerate about the way we dispose off waste and should take steps to decrease that massive number rather than adding to it.