‘The Plastic Bag Store’ Opens in Ann Arbor Next Week

The pop-up art installation “questions our culture of consumption and convenience.” It will be on display at the 777 building Jan. 17-Feb. 5, 2023.
Photograph by Maria Baranova, courtesy of the University Musical Society.

A pop-up art and film experience coming to Ann Arbor this January aims to show just how bad single-use plastics are for the environment with a display made entirely out of plastic bags and other single-use plastics.

The Plastic Bag Store is a custom-built public art installation created by award-winning theater and film director Robin Frohardt, and features shelves full of produce, meat, dry goods, toiletries, cakes, sushi rolls, and more that were handcrafted from discarded plastics found in the streets and garbage dumps.

It is meant to take a critical look at our “culture of consumption and convenience,” and the lasting effects of single-use plastics.

In addition to the display itself, The Plastic Bag Store also doubles as a stage for a series of short films that use puppetry, shadow play, handmade sets, and dark comedy to show how we’re on track for our legacy to be the plastics that we leave behind.

On select Saturday mornings, the installation will also host special family hours that include drop-in activities for kids.

The Plastic Bag Store kicks off the third installment of the University of Michigan’s University Musical Society’s biennial Renegade Festival, No Safety Net 3.0, a three-week fest that uses art to address relevant issues, which is co-presented by the University of Michigan Museum of Art and the Graham Sustainability Institute.

It will open on the first floor of the 777 Building, located at 777 E. Eisenhower Parkway, Ann Arbor, on Tuesday, Jan. 17, and will remain open through Sunday, Feb. 5. General admission to The Plastic Bag Store is $30 per person, or $12 for students.

For more information, visit ums.org/plasticbagstore.