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Neo Terra

Plastic is weaving itself into the fabric of the earth - Photos: Austin Taylor

AN ART installation that explores the dangers of plastic marine and beach little opened in Lerwick at the weekend.

Julia Barton’s Neo Terra runs from Saturday until 12 November at Shetland Museum and Archives’ Da Gadderie.

The result of three years of research, the installation features plastic litter ‘plastiglomerates’ collected on the beaches in Shetland and in Ross-shire.

Artist Julia Barton and her installation.

Plastiglomerates are a category of rock used as a marker of human pollution on the geological record.

“Plastic in all its forms is weaving itself into the fabric of the earth’s ecosystems and earth itself, silently burying within because little is being done to prevent or manage it,” Barton said.

“The stark prediction is it will provide a future legacy and record of our human interaction with the earth – an environmental catastrophe in waiting.”

The artist will also draw upon the findings of workshops she held with Shetland’s schoolchildren earlier this year, while there will be a special film created in partnership with JJ Jamieson.

Shetland Amenity Trust’s environmental improvement officer Sita Goudie said Barton’s installation raises awareness of significant themes.

“Julia’s creative approach really makes you think about this serious environmental issue and how we can all influence the amount of litter entering the marine environment,” she said.

“The workshops she undertook throughout Shetland in the spring really inspired the children and made them look at the litter they pick up as part of the annual Voar Redd Up in another way and question what else they can do about it.

“I believe the exhibition Julia has produced as a result of this will be memorable for everyone involved in the project and those who visit and engage with the exhibition.”