Join us in the Bow Arts’ Courtyard for a visit from the UCL Mobile Heritage Lab. Bring your own plastic objects for analysis, with scientists on hand to test and identify plastics of any age.
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.
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 involved with our quest of recording different plastics.
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.
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