If you think that's a dead whale washed up on the beach, think again and take a closer look- it's not just full of plastic, it is itself plastic!
A project called "Wasted Animals" in the Philippines aims to raise awareness on how the ocean is full of plastic and show its devastating effects on marine creatures. It's created by Dentsu Jayme Syfu in collaboration with Greenpeace Philippines
on May 11.
"Our objective was to surprise people around the area, and at the same time, raise awareness on the dangers of throwing plastics into the ocean. The location was a beach in Naic, Cavite. It is part of Manila Bay, considered as one of the most polluted bodies of water in the country," creative director Biboy Royong told Creators
In 2016, more than 30 sperm whales were found dead on Europe's shores, with their stomachs full of plastic waste. Then, seeing one on the shores in the Philippines has inspired Royong to take action. "We made a miniature whale that we presented to Greenpeace Philippines. It was our guide in deciding the type of plastic materials to use for each part of the whale."
Syfu, together with a team of local artists, made the 73-feet-long whale in just five days with the use of plastics they found in the same beach. They started with a bamboo structure and then layered the frame with different colors of plastics to simulate a decomposing whale. From red strings, straws, and trash bags for the skin to PET bottles and red plastics for the teeth and innards, a plastic whale was created all without the use of paint. They also utilized the beauty of the shore to make the whale believable, with the tail submerging in water on a high tide.
The project did indeed raise awareness, blowing up on social media. It has even inspired people to raise a petition, calling the ASEAN leaders to take action against plastics. "Seeing an actual artwork of a 'dead' whale may encourage people to explore it, touch it, see how the plastic wastes were carefully selected, placed, and fitted on a particular part of the sculpture. It may give people a certain sense of how it might feel like to actually witness a real dead whale killed by plastic wastes—killed by us," Royong said.
This is a grim reminder that what we throw in the ocean almost always goes back to us.