Artist Statement

Our environment, our shoreline, and the big, blue ocean inspire my art.

Growing up in Southern California, living near the beach, being an avid runner, a beach comber, and an outdoors-man for most of my life have all shaped me into the person and artist that I am. My beach collecting began back in the 80′s during runs/walks on the beach when I found my first roughed up pieces of driftwood, sun-bleached whale bones, and many colorful, dinged up fishing buoys. If you were to walk through my house today, you’d see those funky beach finds displayed as decor pieces.

Upon moving to Long Beach, California in 1998, I started running on a different stretch of beach and noticed less natural items and more pollution being washed ashore. I picked up various debris like a handful of Styrofoam, or those red plastic Solo cups and tossed them in the trash each day. I soon noticed many other items littering the shoreline. Each day I’d start my run in search of a plastic grocery bag (which never took long) and filled it as I trekked up the shore. Weeks and months passed, I bagged the trash, threw it away, bagged more trash and threw it away only for more to reappear with the changing tides…plastic, bottle caps, lighters, cigar tips, straws, among countless other single use waste would just pile up. One day I brought a bag of plastic home and rinsed it off. I envisioned how it might make cool art with meaning. From that day forward I had a new routine: removing trash from the beach, cleaning it, sorting it, and creating works to display in my home.  I made pieces for my friends and family as a reminder to limit bad habits of using single use plastics and Styrofoam.

My goal is to create artful representations from society’s discards.  I do my best to protect and preserve the beach in my community and on a larger scale the ocean around the globe. I hope to bring awareness and educate through my art, so future generations can enjoy our beaches, oceans, and precious environment.
-Thom Lacie