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Student clubs collaborate to showcase ‘recycled art’

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Student clubs collaborate to showcase ‘recycled art’

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By Mridhu Khanna, news correspondent

Art and environmentalist student groups collaborated Thursday to showcase “recycled art” made from items like broken umbrellas, cardboard and juice boxes at the Behrakis Health Sciences Center.

The Husky Environmental Action Team, or HEAT, traditionally makes this kind of art at meetings once a year, HEAT President Matthew Remaker said. The pieces on display were made during previous meetings and then polished up for the showcase.

“Trash art is always a pretty popular event for us to do [at meetings],” said Remaker, a third-year business administration major. “We would just gather a bunch of trash and recycling and bring it to our meeting and then people would just create stuff.”

A student looks on at a piece of recycled art. / Photo by Emma Rapp

Remaker said this is the first year HEAT is displaying the pieces through a collaboration with Spark, the contemporary art initiative on campus. Max Wagner, the club’s vice president and a third-year business administration major, was the main organizer behind the collaboration that showcased art from members of both clubs.

“We’ve always done a recycled art event but this year we decide to expand it,” Wagner said. “We decided to partner up together [with Spark] and showcase any type of environmental art. We had our members really refine their pieces and bring them here to the showcase and we’re showing them off with other environmental pieces.”

Remaker said when HEAT creates recycled art in club meetings, the sculptures are usually taken down by the end of the meeting. In the future, he said he hopes they may be able to display the work in the exhibition hall between the Curry Student Center and Ell Hall.

“It was our first year, so it was a little rusty,” Remaker said. “We didn’t have the attendance we were hoping for and it was logistically difficult to manage all the art, but we definitely want to try and do it again.”

Two students pose with a sculpture of a muscle milk fraternity brother. / Photo by Emma Rapp

While some of the sculptures were purely for fun, like a tower made of cardboard or a fraternity brother made of a container of muscle milk complete with a baseball hat, other pieces conveyed more serious messages. Wagner pointed to his own sculpture that displayed the dangers of single-use items like juice boxes and egg cartons. He had included widely recognizable items like a Gatorade bottle and box of Kraft mac and cheese.

While HEAT members made many of the sculptures during club meetings, some items, like spiders made from broken umbrellas, were made by Spark members just for the event.

Last semester, Spark collaborated with the College of Engineering to create a themed display that examined the role of science in everyday life. The art pieces were hung in the Snell Engineering Center.

Spark hopes to continue collaborating with other groups, said Bella Cura, a fourth-year marketing and interactive media studies combined major.

“We’re trying to move more forward in a direction that kind of works more toward issues rather than just, ‘Here’s art, come see it,’” Cura said. “It makes it more essentailized to the Northeastern community and brings people together.”

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Student clubs collaborate to showcase ‘recycled art’