Washed Ashore

Art to Save the Sea

Opening April 22

See larger-than-life sea creatures sculpted from plastic trash. Sand toys, plastic bottles, and colorful shards of all kinds have been transformed into the stripes of a giant parrot fish, the teeth of a 10-foot-long shark, and the beak of a massive penguin.

These are just a few of the animal sculptures that will be featured at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium as part of the Washed Ashore exhibit. All of the artworks are made out of plastic debris that has washed up on beaches.

Be amazed by these artworks while learning about the impact of human activities on these animals in the wild - and find out how you can join the Zoo's quest to reduce single-use plastics.

washed ashore collage


  • Scavenger Hunt - Discover activities at all ten sculptures and learn where these animals' real counterparts can be found around the zoo or in the wild.
  • Plastic Smog - Learn how plastics move throughout the ocean.
  • Animal Tales - Play a matching game and learn how garbage affects animals in the ocean.
  • Operation Plastic - Learn how seabirds ingest plastic.
  • Staff Recommended - Browse examples of favorite items used by Zoo staff to help cut down on single-use plastics.
  • Decomposition Lineup - See how long it takes for various materials to break down.
  • Microbead Demo - Find out where tiny plastic microbeads might be lurking in your favorite products.


Single-use plastics, such as bags and bottles, often escape the landfill and recycling bins and instead end up in the ocean, where seals, fish and birds can ingest them or become entangled.

The Zoo is helping to keep wildlife safe by not using plastic bottles, lids, or straws; the gift shop has also given up plastic bags.


  • Bringing your own containers for coffee, water and other beverages.
  • Taking along reusable bags and containers for shopping, traveling, or mealtimes.
  • Buying products with a minimum of plastic packaging.
  • Asking your server to skip the straw when you order a beverage.
  • Encouraging your friends and family to join you.

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About the artist

angela pozzi

In 2007, Angela Haseltine Pozzi was called to the beach in Bandon, OR, where she had spent summers as a child.

Noticing the plastic pollution that washed up daily on the beach, she realized that she could use the power of art to educate the public about the beauty of ocean wildlife and the tragedy of marine debris.

Her non-profit organization, "Washed Ashore: Art to Save the Sea," has processed about 20 tons of garbage in seven years and constructed nearly 70 sculptures, thanks to the help of thousands
of volunteers.

Washed Ashore is supported by:

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