Join us at Nunnery Gallery and Bow Arts’ Courtyard for a visit from the UCL Mobile Heritage Lab and environmental charity Thames21. Bring your own plastic objects for analysis, with scientists on hand to test and identify plastics of any age - and explore Thames-shore material to discover its plastic content

The UCL Mobile Heritage Lab has on-board equipment to analyse plastics for their different material make-up. Different materials indicate different age, so we can tell you what your plastics objects are made of – and perhaps where they were made! Perhaps you have old ‘ivory’ handled utensils, which are in fact early celluloid-based plastics made in east London.

Thames21 will offer a fun (and clean) hands-on session scouring Thames-shore material to find all the items of plastic contained within, and sharing knowledge gained through their research and practical experience of Thames clean-ups.

A great opportunity to find out more about plastics’ history in east London and learn about different types of plastics and how they’re made, this event invites visitors of all ages to bring in samples and gain new insight into plastics and why we use them.

This event is run in partnership with the UCL Institute for Sustainable Heritage an interdisciplinary group of scientists, social scientists and heritage specialists that deliver sustainable solutions to real-world cultural heritage problems; one of its key areas of research is plastic heritage, and with Thames21, the voice for London’s waterways, working with communities to improve rivers and canals for people and wildlife.

A great opportunity to find out more about plastics’ history in east London and learn about different types of plastics and how they’re made, this event invites visitors of all ages to bring in samples and get new insight into plastics and their challenges.

 

Raw Materials explores the forgotten industrial history of plastic in east London around the River Lea. The exhibition reveals the story of east London’s central role in the invention and early development of plastics, showcasing some of the very first plastic objects alongside newly commissioned artwork which tell the story of this material’s remarkable journey. Read more about the exhibition here.

Raw Materials: Plastics has been made possible through the generous support of the National Lottery Heritage Fund and the project’s academic partner UCL.

Photo credit: Rob Harris

Event details

Nunnery Gallery, 181 Bow Road, E3 2SJ

Saturday 17 August, 12-4pm, FREE