This Mangaluru Girl Turns Discarded Bottles Into Art

What to do with a used plastic bottle? Some may dump it on the roadside while others may go for recycling it. But, this 23-year-old is going an extra mile to turn the trash dumped at beaches into canvases for her artwork.

Megha Mendon, a final year architecture student from Mangaluru, was not ready to ignore the trash dumped at the banks of Phalguni river, near her home. Instead, she thought of doing something which can encourage people to not throw them away. And she zeroed in on bottle art. Megha says that she started doing bottle art two years back. “When I go out with my friends I used to found find many bottles discarded here and there. Thinking on how to reduce the waste I thought of giving it an artistic touch so that people instead of throwing it away will utilise it at their homes”, she says.

Megha brought home those discarded bottles and cleaned them. She started painting on those bottles and added a chemical coat to ensure the paint does not wear off.
Soon enough, her house was full of multi-coloured bottles designed with Warli art, Game of Thrones-inspired art and other pop-cultural references.
At least 900 bottles which were discarded at various beaches have now been transformed into home decor.

Megha’s artwork was not exposed to do the outer world until renowned artist and environmentalist Dinesh Holla took notice of her creativity. “I realised that I and my friends doing it alone will not clean the entire city. At that time, artist Dinesh Holla saw my work and encouraged me to conduct a workshop. I decided to conduct a workshop without an age bar so the elders and children alike can participate,” the 23-year-old says

She organised a five-day workshop in May, on how to upcycle bottles, which was attended by 30 people of different age groups.

Happy with the overwhelming response, Megha wants to conducts more such workshops and encourage others into finding creative solutions to manage waste.
With the plastic menace looming large over our country, such initiatives deserve not just our attention, but emulation too.