OCEANSIDE — Families grabbed glue guns, paintbrushes and recycled materials and gathered around craft tables at the Oceanside Museum of Art on May 3 for the Free Family Art Day. The results were fun sculptures, colorful journals and scented watercolor paintings scrapped together from materials that are usually thrown away. Families also gained a better understanding of the ill effects of plastic waste.
“It’s a great way to get kids enthusiastic about art,” Mary Peirsol of Encinitas said. Peirsol brought her two grandchildren to Family Art Day. “We come to every one of them.”
“It’s an opportunity for parents and youngsters to work together on a creative project,” Executive Director Skip Pahl with Oceanside Museum of Art said. “Parents can enjoy their children while they’re in the creative process. Families plan on spending 20 minutes and end up spending the whole afternoon.”
Finished family crafts mirrored sculptures that were on display in the one-day exhibit “Vortex Plastique,” and bridged the experience of viewing art with the opportunity of making art. There were also docent led tours of the museum geared toward children.
Artist Peggy Ann Jones explained that the “Vortex Plastique” exhibit makes a strong statement about the impact of plastic waste on the environment. Each sculpture addresses a different consequence waste creates. “This art has a lot to say,” Jones said.
A massive braided rug made from more than 3,000 plastic bags sits in the center of the exhibit space. The rug represents collective plastics that get caught in ocean tides.
Around the rug are four sculptures made from recycled materials. “Amazon,” appears to be a woman paddling a green canoe. The sculpture speaks of how drought, brought on by climate change, isolates some communities once connected by waterways.
“Mercury Rising,” looks like a goddess with flaming wings. The sculpture brings attention to the extinction of birds caused by global warming, another consequence of increased waste.
The sculptures package the ill effects of manmade waste in the guise of art and raise environmental awareness with “trash facts” listed below each piece.
More Free Family Art Days are scheduled at the Oceanside Museum of Art on July 5, Aug. 2, Oct. 4 and Dec. 6. For information on upcoming art days, visit www. oma-online.org.