10 December 2010

Learning about plastic at the Two Oceans Aquarium

Roy Barford
Simon MAX Bannister with one of his creations. Photo by Roy Barford

Plastic pollution was the main topic of discussion at the Two Oceans Aquarium today, with presentations by researchers from the 5 Gyres expedition team, as well as local artist Simon MAX Bannister, who launched his exhibition, Plastikos, at the Aquarium last night.

Bannister spent three months gathering plastic waste from the coastlines and roadsides of South Africa, using what he found to create the pieces on display. Summing up his message, Bannister says, “There is simply too much plastic in the ocean,” adding that he intends taking Plastikos to aquariums around the world.

The exhibition will remain at the Two Oceans Aquarium until the end of January.

The 5 Gyres team, made up of a mix of researchers, filmmakers, journalists and even professional surfers, arrived in Cape Town this week, following a 31-day journey from Rio de Janeiro. During this expedition, they collected 67 samples of plastic waste by trawling the top 20 centimetres of the Atlantic Ocean.

Speaking at the Aquarium, 5 Gyres co-founder Marcus Eriksen told a story of how, on one expedition at sea, the crew’s food supplies were running low so he decided to catch a fish. When he cut the fish open, however, he discovered 17 pieces of plastic inside.

The 5 Gyres team has invited Bannister to join them on the next leg of their journey, so that he can learn more about plastic waste. He has accepted and is very excited about the adventure ahead: “I’ve done a little bit of sailing before, but nothing like this!”

Follow the 5 Gyres team on their blog.

For more information about Plastikos, please contact:

Helen Lockhart
Communications and Sustainability Manager
Two Oceans Aquarium
Tel: 021 418 3823
Email: helen.lockhart@aquarium.co.za

To find out more about Bannister’s work, visit http://www.maxplanet.info.

blog comments powered by Disqus