Throw Aways
by Lori Eanes

project STATEMENT

Plastic and food are intricately linked in our modern culture. With its food preserving qualities and its light, durable strength, we’ve come to depend on it. But since the 1970s, there’s been a rapid and extreme increase in plastic production with shocking results.

Plastic is now everywhere—even at the bottom of the ocean. Food and plastic go hand and hand and together they fill 45 percent of our landfills, according to the EPA. The problem is that plastic doesn’t decompose—it just breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces called microplastics, which kill wildlife, release toxins, and enter the food chain.

I began this project several years ago—seduced by the translucent beauty of food and plastic, but troubled by the problems plastic has wreaked on our planet. Since the pandemic shutdown began in March, I had time to revisit my earlier project and push the ideas. I hope these images will increase awareness and lead to change. A single-use plastic ban would save thousands of tons of plastic from entering the waste stream and would help shift our consumer throwaway mindset.

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