Museum hours: Mon-Sat: 10a.m. - 5p.m. | Sun: noon - 5p.m.

Plastics Unwrapped

On Exhibit February 4 – April 23, 2017

Before the 1950s, people rarely used plastics. How did plastics go from being rare to being everywhere – from food containers to raincoats to essential surgical tubing? Plastics Unwrapped explores what life was like before plastics, the science behind them, what happens when we throw them away, and what’s in store for the “material of the future.”

The exhibition originated at the Burke Museum at the University of Washington.

The History Center has added new features, including a 200-square-foot plastic “tiny house” that offers big inspiration about improving energy efficiency in homes of any size.

As a complement to the exhibit, works by artist Bobbi Mastrangelo show how she uses plastics in creating her trademark “Grate Works” – sculptural reliefs inspired by real manhole covers and sewer grates, some decades old. Mastrangelo’s art brings attention to the history and beauty of the humble cast iron that lies beneath our feet on city streets.