Statue of Liberty drowns in plastic installation in Flatiron

Sept6 Liberty

A pop-up installation aimed to highlight the worsening crisis of plastic in the oceans. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

On Labor Day, a 20-foot replica of the Statue of Liberty appeared on the north Flatiron Plaza, brought there by SodaStream International LTD, to highlight the over-use of plastic bottles. To do this, the statue was buried chest deep in empty plastic water bottles packed in a large steel cage.

The project, “Drowning Liberty,” was done in partnership with the nonprofit organization Oceanic Society, and the installation will visit other cities. It remained up across the street from the Flatiron Building through Wednesday, installed near an abstract, dome shaped wooden sculpture, Jorge Palacios’ “Link,” that’s been on view since late August.

SodaStream reps tried to encourage passerby out in the stifling heat to commit to using reusable bottles with the first 10,000 people willing to take the pledge getting one of the company’s own reusables bottles free. The company also said a percentage of sales on SodaStream.com during the event would be donated to Oceanic Society to support its work in driving action for ocean conservation.

“Studies show that by 2050 there will be more plastic than fish in the world’s oceans,” said Oceanic Society CEO Roderic Mast. “Governments, individuals, non-profits and corporations must all act together to address this enormous and urgent challenge.”

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