Innovative Artists Who Make Artwork from Trash

HA Schult’s haunting ‘trash people’ have graced the streets of many of the world’s most major cities … silently open to interpretation as they travel the world and sit everywhere from the parks of New York City to the Great Wall of China. It took Schult 6 months and 30 assistants to create these strange sculptures from crushed cans, computer parts and virtually anything else he could appropriate to assemble them. What is their purpose and meaning? It is difficult to say, but they are certainly trans-cultural and intended to engage, inspire and engender reflection in those who see them and are a foil to see the reactions of different nations and groups of people.

trash-sculptures projected-trash-art projected-art-from-trash trash-sculpture-garden

“Trash” Storage Pods as Art

A PODS unit in 2013’s Contain It! installation at Dunedin Fine Art Center.

Dunedin Fine Art Center

A PODS unit in 2013’s Contain It! installation at Dunedin Fine Art Center.

Trashy Treasures and Contain It! are provocative titles of dual events at Dunedin Fine Art Center that are anything but. Both have been fun and successful fundraisers for several years and utilize the center and its lovely lakefront grounds. Trashy Treasures inside offers donated art and art supplies (someone else’s trash — get it?) at a silent auction on Friday and a “garage sale” on Saturday. Contain It! consists of PODS units scattered about the grounds in which artists and art collaboratives create environments, a form of installation art that has become popular internationally.

Practical issues of hunger and thirst are covered by food trucks and, new this year, a selection of craft beers.

Admission is free on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. . Dunedin Fine Art Center is at 1143 Michigan Blvd. For information, call (727) 298-3322 or visit

Ocean Trash Plaguing Our Sea

Garbage patches in the ocean aren’t piled-up islands of trash and debris, as is the common perception. But that doesn’t mean the tiny, swirling plastic bits are nothing to worry about.

The currents of the North Pacific gyre collect trash—mostly bits of microscopic plastic—into what are known as “garbage patches.”

Credit: NOAA Marine Debris Program

In the Pacific Ocean, four ocean currents merge to form the North Pacific gyre, also known as the North Pacific Subtropical High, which spans the western US to Japan, and Hawaii to California. This enormous rotating vortex has collected floating garbage from across the Pacific, but much of the debris can typically be found in the calm center of this rotating area, often referred to as the “eastern Pacific garbage patch.” Keep in mind, however, that this is no island or blanket of trash that can be seen with satellite or aerial photographs—most of the floating trash is tiny pieces of plastic, many of them so small as to be invisible to the human eye.

Its vast size and the small size of the trash left the garbage patch largely unnoticed until the early 1990s, when Captain Charles Moore, head of the Algalita Marine Research Foundation, sailed through a rarely traveled area between Hawaii and the mainland. Over the course of a week, despite being hundreds of miles from land, Moore watched a continuous stream of plastic trash float by. Although fishermen and sailors have noted the debris in this area for years, it was Captain Moore who brought the area into the public sphere.

While the garbage patch has received a lot of attention because of its size, it is not the only area where marine debris can be found: marine debris affects waters and coastlines around the world. Animals frequently become entangled in large pieces of debris, and can be cut, drowned, or slowed down by dragging the extra weight. Additionally, heavy gear, such as fishing nets, can damage reefs and other important habitats.


New England Aquarium/K. Mahoney

Because of its durability, low cost, and our increased use in recent decades, plastic makes up the majority of marine debris seen on shorelines and floating in oceans worldwide. This creates a difficult problem because most plastics are not biodegradable (bacteria don’t break them down into simple, harmless components the way they do paper or wood). Instead, as plastic ages, the sun’s light and heat break it into smaller and smaller pieces.

This tiny plastic confetti, along with larger pieces of floating plastic, creates a big problem. Birds, like the laysan albatross (Phoebastria immutabilis), and filter feeders that strain food out of the water may mistake plastic for plankton, fish eggs, or other food. On remote Midway Atoll, albatross chicks die of starvation and dehydration because their parents have unwittingly fed them bottle caps and cigarette lighters, which they can’t digest. Even in the protected waters surrounding the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, at the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument, our trash threatens endangered species like Hawaiian monk seals and green sea turtles.

Scientists with agencies such as NOAA, and other institutions around the world, continue to research the impacts of marine debris, including the emerging area of microplastic debris (plastic that is less than 5mm) and its impacts on our marine ecosystems.

Pharrell Williams presents G-Star RAW for the Oceans

Pharrell recently announced plans to launch a new jeans collection with the denim label G-Star RAW. The collection, called G-Star RAW for the Oceans, will be created using fabric from Bionic Yarn. We’ve been sterilizing and melting down plastic bottles to make synthetic threads for years now but Bionic Yarn’s new thread will apparently originate with plastic waste pulled from the ocean. The details aren’t available yet, though. Hat tip Grist.


Culling plastic waste from the ocean won’t be easy. Plastic doesn’t float around in neat islands. It’s more like a disgusting soup. The fuel needed to remove the plastic and clean it could end up being more than the petroleum saved through recycling. Plus, if you ever forget how large the oceans are, think about the drifting cruise liner that’s been eluding discovery for a year.

If one person can make these herculean challenges seem doable, it’s probably Pharrell. He’s featured on Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky” — a song that even got a Russian police choir busting moves. There’s his huge meme-worthy hat. And he’s 40 years old but has such smooth skin that he recently had to dispel vampire rumors.

Finally, there’s this upbeat, catchy video about the jeans.

We’ll have to wait and see whether the technical aspect works out, but knowing Pharrell’s style, those jeans are going to be tight.

Illustration Credit: G-Star RAW and Pharrell via YouTube

RAW for the Oceans is a long-term G-Star collaboration with Pharrell Williams, owner of Bionic Yarn, that makes something fantastic with ocean plastic. For more information about RAW for the Oceans click here

Post originally featured on Discovery.

Heartwarming Exchange Between Trash Collector and Autistic Boy Goes Viral

Posted from ABC Entertainment News|ABC Business News


A five-year-old boy from California obsessed with garbage trucks got the surprise of a lifetime from the garbage man he religiously greets at his family’s home every Monday.

Daniel Mulligan, of Ojai, Calif., became fascinated by garbage trucks as a toddler after his mother, Robin Newberger, showed him YouTube videos of garbage trucks as a way to ease his fear of the trucks’ loud noise.

Daniel, who has autism, is drawn to the order and precision that comes with the weekly trash pickup and the organization of the trash cans, his mother says.

“He knows which trash can is going out on which day and notices them when we’re driving and notices if they’re out of line,” Newberger said.  “We will literally be waiting outside for hours on trash day because he hears the truck in the neighborhood and can’t focus on anything else.”

On Monday, Daniel and his parents – Newberger and dad, David Mulligan – did their usual routine of waiting outside for the recyclables collector, Manuel Sanchez, to arrive, when Sanchez surprised them all.

Sanchez, an employee of a private, family-owned trash collection company, got out of his truck and presented Daniel with a toy garbage truck of his own.

The family was even more surprised when they realized it was the same toy truck that Daniel received at Christmas but accidentally broke it the same day.

“It was just amazing because it was the same one and Manuel had no idea,” said Newberger, who captured the moment on her phone and posted it to Facebook.  “That made it all the more incredible to us.”

Newberger says that Sanchez jokingly asked Daniel, “Do you want this one too?,” pointing to his real garbage truck.

“I said, ‘He does want your truck,’” Newberger recalled, adding that Sanchez quickly got back into his truck after the exchange in order to finish his route.

Sanchez’s employer, E.J. Harrison and Sons, found out about their employee’s good deed and gifted him with a gift certificate to a local restaurant.

“This was something he did absolutely on his own,” company spokeswoman Nan Drake said of Sanchez, who has worked there for nearly a decade.  “We’re so proud of him.”

The video of Sanchez giving Daniel the truck has gone viral, with more than 60,000 shares and 6,000 likes.  The response has been so overwhelming that Newberger created a separate Facebook page, “The Gift,” as a place for parents of children with autism to share uplifting stories.

“I asked people to share the gifts about their kids because a lot of times, with kids with autism, it’s just about the struggle,” Newberger said.  “I’m glad it’s showing the positive side of autism.”

“The response has been so overwhelming,” she said.

Giant trash bin sent on way from space station

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — The International Space Station has one less capsule and a lot less trash.



A commercial cargo ship ended its five-week visit Tuesday morning. NASA astronaut Michael Hopkins used the space station’s big robot arm to release the capsule, called Cygnus.

Cygnus is filled with garbage and will burn up when it plunges through the atmosphere Wednesday.

Orbital Sciences Corp. launched the capsule last month from Virginia under a $1.9 billion contract with NASA. The Cygnus delivered 3,000 pounds of goods, including belated Christmas gifts for the six-man crew and hundreds of ants for a student experiment.

The ants are still aboard the space station. They’ll return to Earth aboard another company’s supply ship, the SpaceX Dragon.

NASA is paying Orbital Sciences and SpaceX to keep the space station stocked.

A Little Bit About Us…

Do you…
Suffer the effects of animal-spilled garbage at home or work? Have a long driveway that requires loading heavy cans into a vehicle or rolling them individually to the curb? Field complaints from your golf course, marina, or equestrian center clientele or employees regarding the mess left by the raccoons last night? Accidentally trap small animals in your commercial trash receptacles? Walk back and forth repeatedly to the barn to feed and care for your animals? Have vermin in your animal feed? Have an investment property catering to vacation renters whose animal-spread trash is cleaned up by the full-time neighbors? Drag a trash can and multiple loads of yard tools, fertilizer, seed, etc. to maintain your property or facility? Place all your recyclables in one container only to have to sort it later? Carry heavy materials around when they could be stored in weather and animal-resistant containers and rolled on sturdy wheels or towed by car, truck, or ATV?  
We have your solution.
The TRASH KNIGHT™ (pat.pend.) is a revolutionary commercial and residential storage system designed to protect and/or mobilize 32 gallon Rubbermaid BRUTE™ trash cans and mobilize standard automated garbage service 96 gallon and smaller trash, recycling, and yard waste bins.
Our 32 gallon product line is available in one, two and three can models in fixed, rolling and towable configurations to protect garbage, recycling, fertilizer, animal feed or any other materials from animal intrusion and weather, and with the rolling and towable models, enable single-trip transport to the curb or other locations. The attachment of trash can lids to the hinged steel top of our units make this a sanitary ‘touchless’ system.
For commercial use, rolling and towable Trash Knights can be easily moved around a facility when required for banquets, parties, and weddings; and for virtually any kind of grounds maintenance. Single can units work well in break areas, at golf tees or greens, marinas, etc.. All of our units can be customized to fit your needs with the addition of yard tool racks, toolbox mounts, and hay bale racks.
Our 96 gallon mobility system works with commonly used bins in areas that have automated trash service, including the smaller sized cans for households with lighter usage needs. They lack the animal protection features of our 32 gallon line, but still keep cans upright against anything but bears. They work to enable the movement of your cumbersome cans down long driveways pulled either manually down smooth surfaces or towed by car, truck, or ATV. Walking two or three cans to the end of a long driveway can now be reduced to just minutes of your valuable time.

Our product line provides well built, attractive, and cost effective multi-purpose storage solutions that save time and work. Made with pride in Oakhurst, California, we have a Trash Knight™ to suit your residential or commercial needs and budget.

Contact Trash Knight at:


Trash Knight Products

Trash Knight Products
32 GALLON PRODUCTS (Click HERE for information & gallery)
  • Two Can Fixed, Rolling or Towable
  • Three Can Fixed, Rolling or Towable
  • Adjustable feet for fixed units (helps to manage uneven surfaces and slope challenges) galvanized
  • Towing Option employs sliding, retractable tongue, flat-proof tires and small front steering casters. please call for more information.
  • Economy Latch System: Less convenient, but even stronger.

96 GALLON PRODUCTS (Click HERE for information & gallery)

  • Two or Three can
  • Manual Pull or Towable 
  • Easy Load Gate
Home and professional users really like these. They are easy rolling carts with provisions for multiple tools to get to the job in one trip. For 32 or 44 gallon BRUTE™ cans.
Our unprotected 32 gallon products are simple, high quality carts that enhance mobility of 32 gallon trash cans with easy rolling five inch casters. They work best for customers with zero animal problems or those that store materials that need to be mobile. Towable units available. Great for recycling, banquets, etc…

Well, thank you!

  • “It was a pleasure meeting with you today to look at your bear resistant garbage can system. Based on what I saw today, our route drivers will be instructed to service a customer that has one of your units out at the curb, as long as they have not made any modifications to your design. If anyone has any further questions or concerns, please feel free to give them my name and number.”  General Manager for Emadco Disposal Service, Inc., Oakhurst, CA


  • “Just wanted to say thanks for your innovative trash can design. In the past, I’ve had to drag trash cans up the drive way which sometimes results in them tipping over and spilling all of the garbage down the driveway. That is obviously a hassle when trying to get to work on time! Plus, we’ve had a substantial raccoon infestation which these new trash cans have FINALLY resolved. No more sneaky raccoons!!! Thanks so much for helping us take our trash out of the dark ages!!!” – Joesph & Ronda C., Oakhurst, CA
  • “Plain and simple…TRASH KNIGHT WORKS!!! (I have photos!) I’ve had the Trash Knight for about 6 months now and I love it! When I wake up in the morning and look out the window, I expect to see the beautiful mountains we live near, not last night’s dinner STREWN across the driveway. Trash Knight ensures that I won’t have to pick up the scattered trash ever again! I have experienced these proven results. (Again…I have photos!!) We had Phil, the creator of Trash Knight add the tow hitch to our Trash Knight so I can tow it with our quad up to the dumpster. It is so easy! I have saved time, energy and frustration by purchasing the Trash Knight!” – Julie G., Oakhurst, CA
  • “I am very pleased with my Trash Knight trash holder.” – Gardner M., Bass Lake, CA
  • “I believe I have the distinction of owning the first two-barrel Trash Knight, robust vermin-resistant mobile system in the Bass Lake, California area. As a permanent resident of the mountain lake area, I have witnessed both the benefits and drawbacks of living in the area. One specific challenge lead to my decision to purchase a Trash Knight system. When placing trash out at night, there is the issue of dogs, raccoon and black bears searching for a midnight snack. Before you know it, the trash and trash cans are a mangled, shredded mess. After picking up one too many of these “messes” in the early morning hours, I took charge and purchased a Trash Knight system. The Trash Knight has served to prevent most of the vermin activity and has made it difficult for the big animals to get into the trash, thus cutting down on most clean-up activities. Also of note is the robust craftsmanship of the Trash Knight. The Trash Knight is easy to transport and store. The Trash Knight has been a good investment and I am pleased with my purchase.” – Ken D., Bass Lake, CA

Educational & Informational Presentations

The Recycling Program staff of the City of Fresno is pleased to offer the opportunity to schedule a presentation or participate in a community outreach event, located within the city of Fresno, for your students or members of your service organization. To make arrangements, please click here or call the Recycling Hotline at 621-1111. Click the image to the left to visit our “Grow up Green” website where you can see a short video of a recycling presentation.



Recycling presentations are available to pre-k, elementary, middle schools, high schools and colleges, within the City of Fresno. Interactive and entertaining presentations cover information on recycling, resource conservation, and protection of the environment. Students will learn about the importance of recycling programs available to them in Fresno. Our staff is happy to work with you to relate the information and materials covered in your curriculum.

Each presentation takes between 45 minutes to an hour or can be tailored to meet your needs. Handouts, videos and visual aides reinforce the information. There is no fee and all handouts are free.

The program is funded by the City of Fresno and various state grants and focuses on the following areas of recycling:

Community Service Organizations

Recycling Program staff are available to make presentations to community service organizations within the city of Fresno. Topics include recycling, resources conservation, and protection of the environment. To schedule a presentation, please click here or call the Recycling Hotline at 621-1111.

Community and School Events

As part of our goal to educate the residents of the City of Fresno about recycling and protecting our natural resources, Recycling Program staff are available to participate in events, within the city of Fresno, that promote environmental awareness. They are also available to attend community-wide school events such as science fairs, career days and Earth Day events located within the city of Fresno. For more information, or to schedule a presentation or event, please click here or call the Recycling Hotline at 621-1111.

Additional Resources and Supplemental Materials

Educational Packets – includes information on Solid Waste and Recycling services and opportunities throughout the City of Fresno.

“Closing the Loop” Curriculum (grades K – 6) – provides current and accurate waste management information. Enables students to get involved with hands-on action-oriented projects. (Available online at

“A Child’s Place in the Environment” Curriculum (grades 1 – 6) - provides teachers with an environmental education program that encourages students to become environmentally aware and active. (Available online at

“Teens for Planet Earth” Website (grades 9 – 12) – provides teens and adults who work with with teens, resources to carry out environmental service-learning projects in their community. (Available online at:

For more recycling information and links to games, click here to go to our “Kid’s Pages

To contact the City of Fresno Recycling Program, please click here or call 621-1111.


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