Ocean Discovery Institute: Young Lives Transformed Through Science unveiled a new community-created art piece Monday morning during an event hosted by the Office of Councilmember Marti Emerald and Think Blue.
The piece, which will be displayed in the lobby of the City Administration Building until March 20, is titled “Our Watershed: Change flows from Action” and exemplifies City Heights’ commitment to taking action on behalf of the environment. Ocean Discovery, a science education organization, and the local community have worked together since 2007 to restore City Heights canyons. Created by students, families, and neighbors, the art piece highlights the importance of this work by showing how actions – both positive and negative – affect the watershed.
Council Representative and Ocean Discovery alumnus Rudy Vargas delivered remarks at the event, which was carried on CityTV and attended by representatives from city agencies devoted to clean canyons, including the Environmental Services Department and Transportation & Storm Water.
“Inspired by Ocean Discovery Institute, members of the City Heights community have truly embraced their role as environmental stewards of our canyons and watershed,” Emerald said. “This wonderful work of art will serve to both celebrate what we’ve done and spread this important message to even more people.”
Made of paper and discarded bottle caps, the piece is a relief map of a watershed with a city street grid depicted at the top level. All the different types of debris that flow through the watershed are represented by strings of beads, which are attached to tags describing the item and explaining what individual acts cause those items to enter the watershed. The strings are woven together and attached at the end by tags that describe what real actions can be taken to alleviate these problems.
The work is the vision of local artist Sue Britt, who guided a team of seven student interns from Hoover High School the piece over a six month span. Additionally, about 300 community members contributed, creating the beads that flow through the watershed.