It’s been a few years since we last checked in on the work of New York-based artist Joshua Allen Harris, who uses only tape and discarded plastic shopping bags to create giant inflatable animals that he fastens to sidewalk grates and vents to give them a sense of movement and life. A polar bear (see below), that some have linked to concerns about global warming, is the most famous Joshua Allen Harris creation so far. But he’s made many other animals, creatures and monsters, including this more recent one above.
Plastic bags have quickly come to embody our disposable culture’s frivolous and wasteful destruction of the environment. Artist Josh Blackwell plays on this fact by turning them into baskets, which he considers small considered gifts imbued with more value than they initially were intended to have.
As plastic bags slowly become a thing of the past and reusable totes take over, one artist is putting the leftovers to good use. Robert Janson’s beautiful plastic bag installations range from delicate to heavy and resemble giant pink jellyfish. Using light, heat and air, Janson and his friends recycle the plastic bags into moving sculptures.