From plastic waste to energy

From plastic waste to energy

The invention of plastic in the fifties was an incredible and very practical innovation. However, its excessive use and the problems associated with managing the waste coupled with the rather unscrupulous and mercenary behaviours of individuals and manufacturers, means that today it is one of the largest polluters of the planet and the oceans.

Yes, behaviours need to change,
Yes, we need to reduce our dependency on plastic,
Yes, we need to recycle more,
Yes, it’s urgent that we act quickly!

To contain this environmental disaster, we also need to find alternative and sustainable management solutions to handle what will certainly be a long and painful transition.

During its 1st odyssey in 2015, the Foundation’s teams observed that unlike other recyclable waste, like aluminium, no one was collecting up plastics due to not being able to sell them on. As such, they sought a way to give it value. After three years of research and in collaboration with the French company ETIA, the Foundation developed a machine capable of converting plastic waste into electricity.

In this way, Race for Water is offering a local response to a global problem.


Thank you for contributing to the success of
Interactive Art Installation and Exhibition
Here is a recap if you missed the fun and excitement of the day!
Saturday’s Art Walk at the Helms Bakery, with its over seven thousand visitors, was replete with entranced children and fascinated adults. Helms Walk was abuzz with impassioned conversations around solutions to the existential crisis of trash.
Art enthusiasts gleaned inspiration from Garth Britzman’s ingenious Tennis Swing.  His work proved an excellent photo op for Instagram.
Made Out of WHAT founder, Denise Domergue, left, discussed its mission and practices. Behind them, Italian artist Laura Stefani’s delicate and colorful wall piece elicited awe as viewers discovered that the finely woven mesh was made of thin strips of plastic bottles cut with manicure scissors.
Designer, Lisa Staugaard, learns about artist Aaron Kramer as she reads his bio and facts about street sweeper bristles.

Renowned international artist Claudia Borgna taught countless excited comers of all ages how to turn a plastic bag into a flower at our free interactive installation workshop.

While some participants chose to take their flowers home, this newly anointed trash art expert decided to plants her flower within the installation.
The larger-than-life installation by Claudia Borgna delighted and invited children to play in the wonderland she created.
We couldn’t be happier with the huge turnout and enthusiasm. We would like to personally thank Angela Anthony, Communications Director of the Helms Bakery District, for the invitation to curate a Made Out of WHAT exhibition for the Culver City Art Walk and Roll Festival. We would also like to thank Claudia Borgna as well as all our artists and volunteers for enabling another successful event!

Interactive installation and exhibition Saturday, Oct 6th noon to 6 at Helms Bakery District Art Walk & Roll Festival

This Saturday, October 6th, noon to 6pm

Interactive Art Installation and Exhibition

Happening on Helms Walk at this year’s Culver City Arts District

Made Out of WHAT has curated a meandering exhibition down Helms Walk with a selection of work from around the globe made out of consumer and industrial waste: proof positive that old street signs, plastic bottles, used wine corks, and even street garbage can be transformed into beauty and utility.

Join renowned international artist Claudia Borgna in constructing an interactive installation of recycled plastic bags on Helms Walk, offering a witty commentary on our mainstream consumer culture.

Come be surprised and inspired by the exhibition we curate here!

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We Are Not the resistance

The resistance has once again sprung to action, this time around Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court. Even before we learned of the allegation that he sexually assaulted a teenage girl during high school, progressive and liberal forces mobilized to resist his elevation to the highest court in the land, asking people to call their members of Congress, to register their opposition.

Since the beginning of the Trump administration, it seems there has been a new crisis roiling our nation nearly every day — a new jaw-dropping allegation of corruption, a new wave of repression at the border, another nod to white nationalism or blatant misogyny, another attack on basic civil rights, freedom of the press or truth itself. Invariably, these disturbing events are punctuated by Trump’s predictable yet repugnant Twitter rants.

Often the battle lines are clearly drawn and blatantly partisan, as is the case with Kavanaugh’s nomination. Other times it’s less clear where “the resistance” begins and ends. What began as a viral hashtag immediately after Trump’s election has evolved into something that’s increasingly difficult to define. The defiant, boisterous marches that eclipsed Trump’s inauguration helped to inspire a wave of courageous activism, such as the spontaneous protests at airports in the wake of the Muslim ban and the demonstrations against proposed cuts to Medicaid led by disability activists. At the same time, we’ve also seen a broader, bipartisan idea of “resistance” take hold, one that seems to include everyone from establishment Democrats like Nancy Pelosi to the civil rights legend John Lewis to democratic socialists like Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to James Comey, who has spent most of his adult life as a registered Republican.

Unlike the Tea Party, which was born after President Barack Obama’s inauguration and which spawned a proliferation of well-funded, loosely affiliated right-wing groups determined to hijack the Republican Party and push it further to the right, the only common denominator for “the resistance” today is a commitment to resisting Donald Trump — the man, not necessarily his mission.


Even members of Trump’s own inner circle are joining the ranks. A senior official used an anonymous Op-Ed article in this newspaper to declare himself or herself part of “the resistance inside the Trump administration.” The writer was quick to clarify that he or she was not part of the “‘resistance’ of the left.” Quite to the contrary, the tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, the expansion of the military-industrial complex and, by extension, the slashing of vital social services were not only fine by him or her but a cause for celebration.

One might argue that the big tent of “the resistance” is its greatest strength: A massive united front becomes possible when the barrier to entry is so low. If you’re revolted by Trump’s tweets and feel terrified by his access to the nuclear codes, you too can join the resistance.

There is power in numbers, to be sure, but I’ve begun to wonder whether the downsides to “the resistance” frame outweigh the benefits. At first, I thought the question wasn’t worth entertaining because #Resist is a hashtag, nothing more. To the extent “the resistance” is an organized political force, it’s doing quite well. The rising number of progressive candidates and the promising midterm election map are testament to the power of the resistance, however it’s defined.

But the time may have come to take the downsides more seriously. Resistance is a reactive state of mind. While it can be necessary for survival and to prevent catastrophic harm, it can also tempt us to set our sights too low and to restrict our field of vision to the next election cycle, leading us to forget our ultimate purpose and place in history.

CreditIllustration by Johanna Goodman; Photographs via Library of Congress, and Wikimedia Commons/CC by SA 2.0

The disorienting nature of Trump’s presidency has already managed to obscure what should be an obvious fact: Viewed from the broad sweep of history, Donald Trump is the resistance. We are not.