The Art of Recycling

Author: Rachel Novick

dorm recycling contest

On April 2nd the Dooley Room in LaFortune rivaled the Snite for exquisite artwork as Recyclemania concluded its campaign to increase recycling awareness with a Recyclable Art Show. Dorms were asked to submit their own original artwork made entirely out of recyclable items like aluminum cans, plastic bottles, and newspaper. Event organizer Rachel Koch said, “the competition was meant to show people that in addition to recycling their trash, they can reuse it to create something new.”

The artwork was on display from 7-10pm for people passing through LaFortune to enjoy. Highlights of the show included Cavanaugh Hall’s entry “Organized Chaos.” Designed in the shape of their mascot, the chaos, the cyclone was made from plastic cups, cardboard, and an iconic Notre Dame blue recycling bag. According to Cavanaugh Sustainability Commissioner Sara Cline, “the base of the cyclone is made of collages of magazine clippings that depict activities that the girls of Cavanaugh feel best define them.” One panel showed the girls’ passion for the environment with a recycling symbol made of plastic bottle caps.


The girls of St. Mary’s College came across the lake to join in the fun too. Holy Cross Hall submitted a unique display that utilized multiple art forms. In addition to the conventional use of newspaper and ripped T-shirts for 3-D art, the girls choreographed and filmed an environmentally themed dance. Holy Cross resident Kat Nelson led her dorm in creating the display. Nelson said, “a few of the girls in the dorm had been working on recyclable art projects individually, so I put their ideas together to make one display that we could all be a part of.”

The artwork was judged based on incorporation of dorm spirit and creative use of recyclable materials. “We were so impressed with all of the entries,” said Koch. Cavanaugh, Carroll, Pasquerilla East, and Holy Cross each received a green Wilson Rebound basketball made of 40% recycled rubber just in time for Bookstore Basketball. You never know where your trash will end up, because that bottle you recycle today could end up on the auction block along side a van Gogh tomorrow.