Trash Talk is the newest project of artist Xavier Cortada, whose science art focuses on actively engaging people and communities with environmental issues. Calling on individuals to learn and educate each other to mobilize and take action, as he has in past art projects such as The Reclamation Project and the Underwater HOA, Trash Talk addresses the issue of improper recycling. 


Trash Talk addresses the issue of recycling contamination by educating residents on how to Recycle Right and encouraging them to talk about their trash. People are confused about what to put in the bins they take out to the curb every week. This undermines the recycling process because, if contaminated materials are placed in the bin, all materials will end up in the landfill. People do not realize this, and so they do not know of the need for change. Trash Talk breaks this cycle by replacing it with a new one.

Working block by block, Trash Talk aims to have neighbors show neighbors how to Recycle Right. Miami-Dade serves 350,000 households, but 40% of what gets placed inside the blue carts shouldn’t be placed there. Instead of it being recycled, it gets taken to the landfill. Miami desperately needs to start talking trash.

Check mark

By placing check marks on their recycling carts, neighbors can signal to each other that they’ve mastered the art of Recycling Right. It is crucial that we reduce, reuse, recycle and better understand the impact that our consumption has on the planet.