Shocking Beached Whale Installation “Washes Up” in the Philippines

Activist Art to Stop Plastic Pollution

With microplastics polluting the food chain and increasing numbers of marine species facing endangerment, the world's ocean plastic issue is more urgent than ever. To push the issue, Greenpeace Philippines used art to make a bold statement about the pollution issues facing local communities. Seeking to capture the public's attention, a nearly 50-foot-long blue whale was beached just south of Manila. But, it was no ordinary whale; it was actually a massive installation created from ocean plastic.

Greenpeace notes that though the Philippines has made steps to address plastic pollution through legislation, the reality is that the country has ranked as the third highest contributor of plastic waste in the ocean for many years. Mirroring the findings of real beached whales, the sculpture's stomach is filled with a mix of plastic bags, plastic containers, bottles, and other waste collected from the ocean.

In fact, the entire replica was created from ocean plastic. The provocative piece of activist art was a call for ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) to step up and implement measures to curb plastic pollution in an effort to stop environmental degradation.

“The ASEAN region's contribution to plastic pollution in the oceans cannot be ignored and is already way beyond alarming. We are asking the ASEAN membership to take this issue with a sense of urgency and demand that our leaders initiate bold steps to address plastics pollution through regional cooperation, exacting corporate responsibility, and massive public education,” said Vince Cinches, Oceans Campaigner of Greenpeace Philippines.

As the images of the plastic beached whale went viral, Greenpeace's initiative spread far beyond Southeast Asia. The photographs are yet another reminder that we cannot afford to be complacent when it comes to demanding action to stop plastic pollution.

Greenpeace Philippines installed a 50-foot-long beached whale made entirely from ocean plastic as a commentary on the effects of pollution.

Greenpeace Whale Art Installation in the Philippines

Greenpeace Environmental Art in the Philippines

Greenpeace Environmental Art in the Philippines

Activist Art to Stop Plastic Pollution

Greenpeace Whale Art Installation in the Philippines

Greenpeace: Website | Facebook | Instagram

All images via Greenpeace.

Related Articles:

10,000 Pounds of Ocean Plastic Is Turned Into a Leaping 38-Foot-Tall Whale

Hyperreal Whale Beaches on the Banks of the Seine to Raise Environmental Awareness

Sailing Artists Turn Discarded Plastics Found in Ocean into Magnificent Sculptures

Mermaid Swims in a Sea of 10,000 Bottles to Spotlight Plastic Pollution

Jessica Stewart

Jessica Stewart is a Staff Editor and Digital Media Specialist for My Modern Met, as well as a curator and art historian. Since 2020, she is also one of the co-hosts of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. She earned her MA in Renaissance Studies from University College London and now lives in Rome, Italy. She cultivated expertise in street art which led to the purchase of her photographic archive by the Treccani Italian Encyclopedia in 2014. When she’s not spending time with her three dogs, she also manages the studio of a successful street artist. In 2013, she authored the book 'Street Art Stories Roma' and most recently contributed to 'Crossroads: A Glimpse Into the Life of Alice Pasquini'. You can follow her adventures online at @romephotoblog.
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