“We must open our eyes and be more aware of the pollution we generate. That’s why I had myself photographed in the middle of a mountain of garbage.” Marina Testino, founder and creative director of Point Off View, as well as niece of the well-known photographer, is not circumspect with her words. She has dedicated her young life (she is twenty-five years old) to a mission: to organize campaigns to protect the oceans and to promote more sustainable fashion. She calls herself an “artivist” (art + activism), who uses creativity to raise awareness of the issue of garbage and waste.
Her most recent initiative is entitled Useful Waste: “People are under the illusion that garbage magically disappears; what they don’t see is the accumulation of harmful waste that ends up underground, in the oceans or in landfills. So I decided to pose for a photo shoot in two recycling centers in Peru (Provesur and San Miguel Industrias), my home country. The clothes I wear are from local sustainable brands: Balkanica, Sophia Lerner, Annaiss Yukra, Mozh Mozh, Macalo, Cornelio Borda, Celanea, Susan Wagner, Nuna Swimwear, Ayni and Escvdo. The goal is to show that the waste that surrounds me can be transformed into something beautiful and useful, like clothes and accessories. The circular economy can, therefore, work and open us up to options that are recycled and reused. It’s the old that becomes new.” Some brands already pursue this vision, like for example Miniwiz, Seaqual, Repreve, which produce fabrics with fibers derived from recycled plastic bottles, and Econyl, which has developed a nylon fabric made from waste taken from landfills and oceans, that is the same quality as the virgin one.
“I don’t expect people to wear the same red dress to every event for two months (#OneDressToImpress campaign), like me, or to go naked on the beach to denounce toxic-fiber swimwear (#WeSeaThrough campaign) – although there are those who did and I’m proud of that. You don’t even have to upend your routine to protect the Earth, just inform yourself, maybe subscribe to an ad hoc newsletter, recycle and buy ‘conscientious’ clothes. The important thing is to be aware of the topic, the causes and the solutions”.
Another project Testino is working on is #SustainableFridays: every Friday, Marina shares sustainable fashion brands on her social feeds. “I will always do it in an artistic way, because I believe that art is a universal language that encourages people to create their own opinions. In a world where we are constantly numbed, art is a key factor in encouraging not just general but also individual change. For me, that change starts with self-education”.
Opening picture: an image from the “Useful Waste” initiative by Marina Testino, photographed in two different recycling facilities in Peru. The aim is to raise public awareness on the urgent need for a circular economy. Dress and pants, ANNAISS YUCRA. Bodysuit, NUNA SWIMWEAR. Shoes, ÁREA. FOTO @ALEXANDERNEUMANN. STYLING @ANGELAKUSEN. FASHION ASSISTANT @JUANCASFER. MAKE-UP AND HAIR: @_SIENTO_TU_FUEGO_ PRODUCTION @RICKYCHAVEZBEDOYA