After a long journey to Indianapolis, Atelier Van Lieshout’s Funky Bones benches arrived last week and were unloaded on the grounds of 100 Acres: The Virginia B. Fairbanks Art and Nature Park.
Last month, 22 benches were packed in a 40 foot ocean-going freight container at the artist’s studio in Rotterdam. After an Atlantic ocean crossing, U.S. customs clearance, and a few truck trips, the container arrived at the park.
IMA staff assembled on the morning of arrival ready to unload and unpack. We opened the container to find each bench thoughtfully packed and placed within the container. As is typical with artwork in transit, extra materials were used to pad and protect each piece. However, given the size of the work, these “extra materials” amounted to a huge pile of Styrofoam.
Feeling a little guilty about leaving the Styrofoam in a dumpster for trash pickup, I began to ask coworkers if they knew of any places in Indy where we could take the foam to be recycled. Sure enough, just up the road from the IMA, we found exactly what we were looking for. We threw the first of two loads into an IMA Horticulture dump truck and headed to our destination.
Upon arrival, we were greeted by Mark Vandersall and the friendly staff at the Createc Corporation. After unloading the dump truck, Mark was kind enough to walk us through the process of recycling EPS (Expanded Polystyrene) Styrofoam.
Clean, white EPS Styrofoam is fed into the granulator (much like a wood chipper) where it is chopped up into small pieces. These pieces then accumulate in a large dustless bag. From there, they move down to the “densifier” which uses an auger and pressure to eliminate the air in the foam granules. The final product is a highly condensed “log.” These recycled “logs” can then be molded to make new products such as building insulation and product packaging.
To give you an idea of just how dense the materials become; our dump truck full of material was condensed into this:
This blog entry has a dual purpose:
I want to thank the IMA staff who helped in the process of getting the materials recycled. Thanks to Chad Franer, Laurie Gilbert, TJ Lemanski, and Scott Shoultz (who is now, if he wasn’t already, an expert dump truck driver). I’m glad to know that at the IMA, we are always striving for ways to be green.
I also want to spread the word that there is a great place in Indy that is more than happy to take unwanted EPS Styrofoam off your hands. Createc accepts clean, white, molded EPS (#6) Styrofoam Monday through Friday from 9-4.