For centuries, sailors have passed long hours out on the open water by turning elements of nature into beautiful art. From on board whaling ships came scrimshaw, intricately carved whale teeth on which whalers depicted detailed scenes of maritime life. These incredible artifacts are stunning souvenirs, but they're not exactly sustainable. Now, design incubator Swine Studio is paying homage to this tradition by repurposing old trash pulled from the ocean to create similar works of art.
Even out in the middle of the ocean—where the closest fellow humans are often the ones in orbit—man-made plastic abounds. For a recent project called Gyrecraft, a team from Swine Studio collected this plastic and melted it down to a malleable medium using their on-board Solar Extruder. Check out the mini-documentary on the project from National Geographic above.