GYRE: The Plastic Ocean

GYRE: The Plastic Ocean

January 26-June 19, 2015

A flip-flop discarded in Thailand finds its way to Hawaii, and a bottle cast off from a tsunami in Japan becomes Alaska’s beach litter. In a culture dependent upon the modern convenience of plastic, throwaway products of consumption are affecting oceans and shrinking our world as we all become connected through our trash.

A unique art and science exhibition, Gyre: The Plastic Ocean, brings the problem into perspective.  Organized by the Anchorage Museum in Alaska, the exhibition explores the complex relationship between humans and the ocean in a contemporary culture of consumption.

For decades artists have created works that address the relationship between community and environment. Today, plastic packaging finds its way into the hands of artists via our ocean biosphere. Some, such as Atlanta-based artist Pam Longobardi, take an almost archaeological approach to collecting and curating bits of plastic trash while fashioning it into works of art. Others, such as Anne Percoco, collect materials to create community-based work that is often tactile and playful. More than 25 artists from around the world explore these ideas from multiple perspectives in Gyre. The result is a remarkable visual narrative and a provocative look at the impact we each have on our world.

GYRE: The Plastic Ocean is sponsored by the David J. Sencer CDC Museum, Office of the Director for Communication; the National Center for Environmental Health/Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, Office of Noncommunicable Disease, Injury and Environmental Health; and Go Green, Get Healthy, Office of Safety, Security, and Asset Management, CDC.

Header Image courtesy of Mandy Barker.

Special Curator Tours

Join Louise E. Shaw, Curator, David J. Sencer CDC Museum for a special tour.




Jan. 28th, Feb. 4th, Feb. 18th, March 4th, March 18th, April 1st, April 15th, May 6th, May 20th, June 3rd, June 17th

The event is free and open to the public. Reservations are required; RSVP to

Driver’s license or passport required for entry. Vehicle inspection required. Space is limited to 20 people per tour.