Labyrinth Made from Plastic Waste Promotes Waste Reduction

The installation was installed in Buenos Aires, Argentina, to raise awareness about the global plastic waste crisis.

Mallory Szczepanski, Vice President of Member Relations and Publications

June 26, 2018

10 Slides

In celebration of Global Recycling Day and to raise awareness about the global plastic waste crisis, Luzinterruptus, the anonymous Spanish art collective, brought its well-known Plastic Waste Labyrinth to Buenos Aires, Argentina.

For the installation, Luzinterruptus created an immersive labyrinthine piece where visitors could enter and anxiously seek an exit amid the plastic. This experience was intended to start a thought, conversation or intention to improve the way people use or dispose of plastic.

Aside from the discomfort inspired by the view of plastic waste from the surrounding area, Luzinterruptus wanted to show the most popular beverage brands, so it kept all the bottle labels on the bottles that were used for the installation. Most of them were bottles of mineral water, though there were large quantities of bottles of soda.

To create the installation, Luzinterruptus collected and used more than 15,000 bottles recycled from the city. The art collective relied on the valuable collaboration of local groups working on environmental and recycling issues to help it understand the city’s recycling system.

Once the bottles for the piece were selected, cleaned and lit, the art collective built a 200-meter-long labyrinth in a 12-meter-by-12-meter area that took 5 minutes to walk through at a normal step. A U-turn in the middle of the installation created a true disorientating feeling.

The installation was located in one of the city’s most emblematic sites, Plaza Vaticano, across the street from Teatro Colón. It was there for one week and open 24 hours a day, free of cost. This piece was also the destination for other recycling-related events.

Once dismantled, the plastics were conveniently recycled, and the bottles were cleaned, sorted by color and returned to the recycling cooperatives. The empty transparent bags were returned to their manufacturer to be melted and sent back to the company’s manufacturing process.

For past projects, Luzinterruptus created an installation made entirely out of plastic bags for the FAB Festival de Bordeaux in Bordeaux, France; a large installation made from 60,000 recycled bottles for the Luna de Octubre festival held in Madrid, Spain; and an installation made from 20,000 plastic bottles for the I Light Marina Bay festival in Singapore.

In this gallery, you can view a selection of images from the installation.

About the Author(s)

Mallory Szczepanski

Vice President of Member Relations and Publications, NWRA

Mallory Szczepanski was previously the editorial director for Waste360. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Columbia College Chicago, where her research focused on magazine journalism. She also has previously worked for Contract magazine, Restaurant Business magazine, FoodService Director magazine and Concrete Construction magazine.

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