TRASHed at Coachella: Snapshots of Artist-decorated Recycling Bins

The TRASHed Coachella competition challenges artists to create decorative recycling bins that encourage attendees to rethink their trash and start recycling.

How do creative and eco-friendly artists kick off their 2018 Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival festivities? By getting trashed, of course.

Through a competition dubbed TRASHed Coachella: Art of Recycling, artists are challenged to design 65-gallon and 6-inch miniature recycling bins that will be put on display at the festival to encourage attendees to rethink their trash and start recycling.

The competition, which was started 15 years ago by Global Inheritance, was conceived on the notion that different types of people can come together to invest in the idea that we, as a society, can make a positive impact in the communities and world we live in.

“Recycling wasn’t a top-of-mind activity in the early 2000s (at least in the states), so we decided to take a problem and turn it into an educational platform for festivals,” says Eric Ritz, founder of Global Inheritance, a nonprofit organization working to reinvest activism and empower individuals to seek a global balance. “Both the TRASHed: Art of Recycling and TRASHed Recycling Store programs created a quick, fun and impactful solution.”

This year, Global Inheritance received more than 500 competition submissions, which were eventually narrowed down to 54 winners who were gifted with a VIP pass for the festival and other benefits. Some of the designs submitted included characters from popular TV shows and movies, such as “Rick and Morty” and “Star Wars.”

“Two of the most interesting designs were from two artists from Mexico, who made a churro and a bouquet of flowers and incorporated scents of cinnamon and fresh flowers into the designs,” says Maggie Navarlatz, program director for TRASHed: Art of Recycling.

Since the competition’s inception, more than 1,000 artists have created about 2,500 large and small redesigned recycling bins, which have been placed on display in galleries, Coachella and other music festivals, sporting events and public gatherings across North America, South America and Europe. These bins have since been donated to schools and museums across California for further use.

This year’s winning recycling bins will be on display at Coachella, which kicks off today and ends on April 22. But if you can’t make it out to California to see the bins in person, you can flip through this gallery to view some of the artistic concepts.

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