Friday, April 15, 2016

Emerging Cities Champion Application for Recklace Project

Recklace “upcycles” using recyclable materials to create fun, and funky accessories for eco conscious people. The Recklace project started in Managua, Nicaragua in 2010 with the objective to address problems of pollution and littering by creating beautiful things with recyclable materials. I learned from local artisans, how to re-purpose soda cans, plastic bottles and plastic bags and transform them to create functional works of art. In Nicaragua more than half of the population lives in poverty and people struggle to find ways to survive. What I learned, I shared with the people in my community so they could create their own beautiful items, and have the ability to sell these items to earn an extra source of income. Philadelphia has a notorious trash problem and this project seeks to address that by reducing the amount of litter that winds up in streets and in waterways, and by providing information on what materials can be recycled and the benefits recycling for the individual as well as the community at large. I will implement this project by partnering with Fleisher Art Memorial to integrate upcycling into youth workshops at local schools, as well as a local recreation center in South Philly to host adult and family workshops. Below are images of a few things I've made with recycled materials. I'm always happy to share these very simple techniques for using craft as a way to engage people in a creative activity while reducing waste in our streets, parks and waterways.