Somers, Mystic Museum of Art team up to raise awareness of ocean plastic pollution
Mystic — The Mystic Museum of Art and state Sen. Heather Somers, R-Groton, are scheduled to announce Saturday that the museum will commission a sculpture using ocean plastic debris to raise awareness of the problem of pollution in the world’s oceans.
The announcement is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. at the museum on Water Street.
“Ocean plastic pollution is an increasing problem internationally and Long Island Sound is no exception,” Somers said in a statement. “Single use plastic products, such as bottles, bags, caps, wrappers and straws, are making their way into the Sound, being ingested by marine life and affecting the delicate ecosystems in our oceans.”
“Communities situated along the Sound like Mystic, Stonington and Groton, have the most to lose from the proliferation of single use plastic,” Somers added. “Coastal economies are built on healthy sea life, clean beaches and water and also serve as the last line of defense to stem the flow of litter from land to sea.”
Her comments come as the town of Stonington has formed a task force to look into banning single-use plastic bags and straws in town.
A news release from Somers’ office Tuesday said she approached the museum earlier this summer to discuss the possibility of creating the sculpture to raise awareness about ocean plastic. She said the museum “enthusiastically supported the project” and commissioned local artist David Madacsi. His completed sculpture is scheduled to be unveiled at the museum on Earth Day, April 22, 2019.
“This sculpture fits with our mission of creating a piece of art that will inspire creativity and critical dialogue by engaging the regional community,” William Furgueson, the museum’s director of external affairs, said in Somers’ announcement.
The museum’s education director, Mary Addison, also will be working with students in local schools to create their own art inspired by the impact of plastic pollution. And students who use beach cleanup materials to create their own works will be featured at the museum’s Young at Art Exhibition next spring.
Tomra, a Connecticut reverse vending machine technology provider, is helping sponsor the project. Reverse vending machines accept drink bottles for recycling.
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