Trash Can Art Project
In Summer 2011, University Centers and the Sustainability Resource Center collaborated to start this exciting campus art project. The Trash Can Art Project is a community project that selected 5 talented artists to create eco-friendly and Earthaware designs on 5 University trash cans for a permanent art installation. Students were able to make a permanent change on campus by decorating these trashcans- a simple project that provided an infinite amount of possibilities for positive change at UCSD.

"Environ(mental) Awareness" by Christine Eco
Major: Visual Arts (Media)
Graduation Year: 2012
This piece is centered around environmental awareness. It is an abstract, organic design composed of vines, and leaves taking over the recyclable material; almost consuming it. The conquering plant life occurs from the recyclable material, giving a message that if you recycle, you're helping the earth grow. The aluminum can, water bottle, and box are all examples of what recyclable material is. The vines cut off the material almost making it abstract, which exemplifies the promotion of raising environmental awareness. I named my piece "Environ(mental)awareness", because mental means "of or pertaining to the mind". If we are aware psychologically, in our minds, we can save the planet, because we are the root of the change.

"Our Non-Pictorial World" by Manny Pantoja
Major: Visual Arts (Media)
Graduation Year: 2012
The intentions for this project are to create a visual abstract interpretation of this world that surrounds us. The variety of colors, shapes and lines that are painted on this piece, abstractedly represent the masses of land, bodies of water and living organisms in our environment. The top view of the trash can in shades of yellow and orange to symbolize the vibrance of the sun. In whole, the trash can-as mentioned above-abstractly represent the world. By painting an abstract interpretation of the world on a recycling trash can, may serve as symbolic way of promoting the importance of recycling and being environmentally aware of the beautiful earth in which we live in. The bright vivid of colors of this piece, will undoubtedly attract staff and students to participate and dispose of their recycling waste.

"Dame Nature Prévaut" by Samantha Clements
Major: Ecology, Behavior, Evolution (Biology)
Minor: Visual Arts (Studio)
Graduation Year: 2012
My concept for the Trash Can Art Project depicts the beautiful San Diego skyline covered in a heaping pile of compost (mixed with a few things that don't belong, such as plastics and styrofoam) with plants and flowers growing from the mess. The message that I would like to convey is that it's important to separate waste into compost, recycling, and trash (and to minimize waste production in general). If something is not done about the way that people dispose of their waste, our home in San Diego will suffer the consequences. In the picture there are flowers growing from the compost, because compost is a beautiful thing and, in a way, it is a way of recycling life. Compost provides the fertilizer to grow new plants and fruits and vegetables that can then be used as a source of food to perpetuate life. There is a spider web strung from one of the flowers to items in the pile (plastic bottles and a styrofoam box) that will not decompose, and this web is a symbol for the amount of time that those items spend on Earth in landfills. I want this spider web amongst the beauty to be a symbol that encourages people to minimize their use of non-decomposable items. I combined the images of nature and urbanization in this image as a way of showing that even the biggest cities are capable of being environmentally friendly and minimizing their global impact, and the first big step is correct separation and disposal of waste products.

"Pain in my Acid Rain" by Tim Nottage
Being conservation minded serves our world through the preservation of our health, the health of the ecosystems we are a part of, and the infinite beauty of our planet. Art serves the health of our culture, and much of our art emulates or is inspired by the beauty of our natural world. In this respect, the aims of artists and the aims of the ecologists are one and the same. This piece presents an object of beauty in this world: the vast and seemingly infinite sky, dotted with the clouds of life-sustaining moisture. As a society, our everyday actions have the power to destroy this beauty and poison our bodies and minds with toxins, such as the air pollution created by cars, the factories that make our goods, and the power plants that give us our electricity; yet we also have the power to preserve the beauty of this world.

Final art piece contributed by Rebecca Limerick