September 20, 2009 by Robin Plaskoff Horton
100 billion individual disposable pieces of plastic cutlery, according to some sources, are used and disposed of each year around the globe. In a landfill, these plastic utensils can take an estimated 500-1000 years to break down into smaller components.
Finnish Artist Lea Turto turned 12,000 plastic forks, knives, and spoons into beautiful works of site-specific environmental art. She attracted audience participation as the public took part in “planting” the installation. The works were temporary, continuously evolving: grass grew over them in three weeks, a triumph of nature over man-made materials? The artist subsequently gathered up all the cutlery, washed them, and then used them again to create the next installation.