A responsible approach to the environment and resource consumption is one the priorities of Garage’s long-term program of sustainable development.
Any major changes derive from a small initiative: composed of Museum employees representing different departments, the working group that has formed at Garage tests and implements various environmental suggestions in the life of the institution. The group is a self-organized body supporting the employees’ initiatives and making the information regarding the program and its ongoing environmental projects accessible to a wide audience in a special section on Garage’s website.
The Museum currently gradually introduces the principles of conscious consumption in its everyday routines, wishing to contribute to the preservation of the environment and natural resources, even if on the level of a single institution. The main directions embrace the refusal to use plastic (including plastic bags), the reduction of paper consumption, the introduction of waste and paper sorting, the reuse of exhibition materials and props, and the improvement of energy efficiency.
The Museum’s staff make sure that the negative impact on the environment is minimized on a daily basis: office meeting rooms are equipped with monitors to avoid the use of printed materials; electric devices are switched off when not needed; disposable plastic has been completely eliminated in the office in favor of reusable dishware; all printing rooms are equipped with PaperCut print management software, as well as paper and cardboard collection boxes.
Garage eagerly supports and collaborates with companies that share its goals and values in the field of social and environmental responsibility. This key working principle spreads to both partners and contractor companies. All Garage partners and patrons have championed the Museum’s initiative to stop using printed invitations, the production of which killed around five trees annually.
Garage’s technical team cooperates with many international developers of LED lamps to ensure the institution’s energy efficiency. For the same purpose, solar panels were installed on the roof of the Museum.
Each Garage visitor can donate clean unwanted UNIQLO garments in a special Recycling Box container installed in the Museum’s entrance hall. The clothes are then given to people who need them. UNIQLO Recycle project allows the life of things and their practical utilization to be extended to their maximum limits.
Garage crew also takes part in the eco-charity volunteer project Dobrye Kryshechki (Kind Caps) which supports orphan children. All finances collected from selling plastic caps of bottled drinks are transferred to the Volunteers Aiding Orphan Children Charity Foundation.
The ban on the use of disposable plastic and the transition to separated waste collection were the first steps made within the conscious consumption program. Today, all cups for take-away drinks are made of paper, and have caps made of corn starch. Plastic straws have been replaced with gluten-free bucatini pasta tubes. Containers for take-away food, as well as flatware, are also made of biodegradable materials, such as sugarcane and corn starch. Those using tumbler bottles for drinks receive a 30% discount on all alcohol-free beverages.
All paper-based products used in the Café (including napkins) comply with FSC and EU Ecolabel standards, while garbage bags are made of recycled polyethylene.
Garage Museum of Contemporary Art takes part in the international Earth Hour initiated by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). By annually dimming the illumination of the Museum’s buildings and the lights in Garage’s public spaces, the Museum’s staff supports initiatives drawing attention to the existent environmental issues and the necessity of their solution. On March 30 this year, Garage will run a discussion on environmental problems and conscious consumption.
Garage Screen summer film program will feature special screenings dedicated to environmental agenda. Garage Museum of Contemporary Art’s strategic partner, the 4th Moscow International Festival of Experimental Film MIEFF 2019, will award a special prize, The Coming World. The establishment of the prize coincides with the large-scale exhibition project The Coming World: Ecology as the New Politics 2030–2010 that will open at Garage on June 28. The $1,000 prize will be awarded to creators of the film which best reflects the exhibition’s themes and echoes the understanding of ecology suggested in The Coming World show.
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