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Recycling into Unique Art
By: Brenda, Director of Education and Volunteers, Audubon Zoo
There are some new creatures at the Audubon Zoo Discovery Walk. They are extraordinary to look at and will not bite or make any messes. These wonderful animal sculptures (a pangolin, porcupine and alligator)are spork art. (Spork-an eating utensil that combines the feature of a spoon and a fork.) Sixth, Seventh and Eighth grade students from Glasgow Middle School created life-sized animals using recycled materials from their school cafeteria.
Art teacher, Geeta Dave, explained that the animals were created with extraordinary craftsmanship to demonstrate characteristics of actual animals using a very difficult medium. During last school year, students collected and cleaned approximately 600 used sporks each day during breakfast and lunch. In one semester, students gathered about 36,000 sporks. They then began experimenting using different parts of the sporks to create animal sculptures. The limited shapes and sizes of the sporks created a challenge for the students as they began to use them to recreate images of animals. Additionally, students were amazed when they discovered patterns on the animals they had never noticed before. Students started this project by building life-sized skeletons of the animals using recycled packing materials. Next, sporks were individually tied to the skeletons to replicate animal’s patterns. This was a collaborative group project and every student from each class worked on the project. Each animal contains about 5,000-10,000 sporks.
Using their extraordinary expertise and imagination,these students successfully captured the characteristics of the animals in their unique animal sculptures. The purpose of this project was to create an awareness of the importance of recycling and preserving our environment. There are many ways to join the Green Revolution and these unique animal sculptures are relaying that message through art.
These spork sculptures will be on exhibit at the Audubon Zoo Discovery Walk through April. They have already created quite a buzz and we hope that everyone that sees them will think about reusing materials, saving our environment and the beauty that nature inspires us to replicate through art.