Recycled Material Art Project
City Unveils Recycled Art Sculpture REcycled Reef
The City unveiled its latest Art in Public Places project, REcycled REef, on Friday, March 18 at 8:30am at South Beach Park, near the entrance at Palmetto Park Road. Members of the public joined the sculpture's artist, Gregory Dirr, City Council and staff, 4Ocean, and other community partners for the unveiling of the art piece. The unveiling was followed by a beach cleanup where the community gathered to pick up trash, plastic and other materials.
Read below for more information on the history, design and purpose of this project. For more information on the City’s sustainability efforts, visit City of Boca Raton’s Office of Sustainability, and Gumbo Limbo Nature Center.
Unveiling of REcycled REef, and Beach Cleanup
The City will unveil its latest Art in Public Places project, REcycled REef, on Friday, March 18 at 8:30am at South Beach Park, near the entrance at Palmetto Park Road. The artwork unveiling is open to the community and will be attended by the artist, Gregory Dirr, and City leaders. Gumbo Limbo Nature Center will host an educational tent to further educate the community on how plastic debris directly affects local marine life.
The community is also invited to participate in a Beach Cleanup at South Beach Park from 9am – 11am with the City’s Office of Sustainability, and support from local public benefit corporation, 4Ocean.
- The Office will provide participants with buckets and grabbers for the cleanup.
- In the spirit of waste reduction, plastic water bottles and gloves will not be provided at the beach clean-up.
- Please bring a reusable water bottle to refill and, if desired, your own gloves.
- There will be limited free parking for the Unveiling and Beach Cleanup at the South Beach parking lot.
"The recycled material art project is a great way for our residents and visitors to learn about the impact of plastic in the environment, make informed decisions on how they use plastic in their daily lives, and to be mindful of the items they bring to our beautiful beaches,” said Lindsey Roland Nieratka, the City’s Sustainability Manager.
Artist Selection for the Recycled Material Art Project
An artist and design concept for the City’s Recycled Material Art Project were selected at the December 14, 2021, City Council meeting.
The City’s latest Art in Public Places project was envisioned to bring more public art to the City and to encourage creative ways to repurpose, recycle and conserve. The project also aims to educate the community about the harmful effects of pollution and plastics on marine life and inspire sustainable actions through an aesthetically pleasing artistic creation.
Artist Selection and Design Concept
Local artist Gregory Dirr has been selected to create the artwork. Nature has long been a major theme in his artwork, and every piece Gregory creates includes recycled materials. Gregory graduated from the Ringling College of Art and Design in Sarasota, and his artwork has been featured in many solo and group exhibitions and in cities across south Florida and beyond. His previous mural work for the City of Boca Raton can be seen on the Spanish River Park beach tunnels, which debuted in 2019.
Gregory’s proposed design, titled REcycled REef, will feature an oversized coral reef, with a contemporary spin. The core structure will be made using recycled metal rebar, wire mesh and concrete. Discarded plastics will be attached with concrete mortar, covering the entire surface like a mosaic. Gregory will personally collect all plastics used in the project from various beaches. The collected pieces will be treated to prevent deterioration and then primed and painted with UV coating.
Artist Gregory Dirr and Proposed Project Design