Trash Art Contest Brings Awareness to Waste

by Chelsea Pulliam

We are putting out the call to all trash crafters and upcycling artists! We want you to create a piece of trash art and enter to win prizes! Submission deadline is July 16. We will have an outdoor art show on Saturday, July 24 at the Arcata Farmer’s Market. The community can
cast their vote online for the People’s Choice Award and help raise funds for the NEC. (1vote = $1). Submit art and vote online at

Craft for the Coast Trash Art Contest strives to bring awareness to marine debris issues and give litter a new life! By doing beach cleanups and making upcycled art we can prevent trash from going into our oceans and land fills. To take it a step further, we embrace the idea that art is activism and has the power to in influence policy and change the way we deal with marine debris as a community.

Craft for the Coast encourages us to recognize the possibility in what we may have once considered “waste.” Trash can become something beautiful, useful, innovative, and even powerful. We hope to transform our community mindset to see value where we couldn’t see it before, and know our actions create ripples. Viewing or creating a moving piece of artwork made from trash has the potential to create change within your home, community, or even the world!

Prize Categories
• People’s Choice Award: $100 Restaurant 511 gift card and free admission to NEC Summer Celebration
• Best Upcycled Creation: NEC zero waste gift basket
• Best Litter Creation: NEC Cleanup Kit: bucket, picker, gloves, stickers, poster
• Youth Award: Environmental Education Gift Basket


In The Politics of Nonviolent Action, peace activist Gene Sharp described and provided historical examples of 198 methods of nonviolent action (a list of which can be found at Many of these tactics, such as formal letters of support, strikes, boycotts, leaflets and group lobbying, are familiar to readers of EcoNews. One often overlooked tactic of raising awareness and spurring action is art. This month, we are featuring three local art initiatives (see page ___ for more) designed to raise awareness of conservation issues and spur action. We hope you are inspired.

For more info and case studies of nonviolent action visit