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Canadian man's art installation made up of 168,000 used straws looking for a new home

Like A&W’s art installation from earlier in the year, Canadian artist Benjamin Von Wong’s latest work is made up entirely of straws.

The Montreal-native, with help from Zero Waste Saigon, Starbucks Vietnam and hundreds of volunteers, spent more than six months gathering 168,000 to bring the project to life.

Starbucks installed used straw collection bins at a number of stores in Vietnam to collect used straws, while Zero Waste Saigon collected them through clean-up groups.

Once the straws were collected, washed, sorted and colour coded, a large group of volunteers helped create a stunning 3.3-metre tall art installation representing the ‘Parting of the Plastic Sea.’

<who>Photo Credit: Benjamin Von Wong

“Our hope with this installation is that each and every person feels empowered to take a step towards using their last straw,” Von Wong wrote in his blog.

On Jan. 22, 2019, the art installation was recognized by Guinness World Records as the largest drinking straw sculpture in the world.

<who>Photo Credit: Benjamin Von Wong

Sadly, the project’s run at its current home, Estella Place in Ho Chi Minh City, ends on March 24 and Von Wong is looking for a new company, institution of museum to adopt it.

“We believe that the fight against single-use plastics is going to go on for the next couple hundred years,” he said. “Because of that, we hope to find a forever home for our installation.”

<who>Photo Credit: Benjamin Von Wong

It won’t be the easiest or cheapest thing to transport, he admits, but Von Wong believes it’ll be worth it for someone who believes in the cause.

For more information on the project and Von Wong, visit his website.

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