A bunch of 20-foot long shipping containers have been dropped off around the Wollongong Harbour foreshore to teach the community a lesson.
In today’s global world you may have had coffee from Brazil or a smoothie containing frozen fruit from China. You could be wearing clothes made in India, watching a TV made in Japan while sitting on a sofa containing wood from Argentina on a laminate floor manufactured in Sweden.
The colourful steel containers between Osborne and Lang Parks will become temporary galleries and detail the impact containers have had on Australia since the first ship arrived in 1968 – including the environment.
Container is a project by the Australian National Maritime Museum to highlight the industry ad some 99 per cent of Australia’s trade is conducted by sea freight.
“It’s a humble thing that's around us all the time, we don’t notice it very much but it’s a critical part of everyone’s lives,” museum spokesman Dr Stephen Gapps said.
“People will be surprised by the amount of things they either are wearing or own … like, how much stuff in everyone’s daily lives has spent time in a shipping container.”
Container will run until January 2019 with the official launch Friday October 19. It includes a living/dining room with pancakes topped with strawberries sitting on a Freedom table, a couch that comes from a popular chain, several lamps, a rug, books and other materials.
The total number of kilometres traveled by sea by all the products in that container is 887,082 km.
Each of the containers are themed – ship, cargo, port, ocean, build and things.
The impact of using containers to ship by sea has been likened to the impact of binary code on modern computing. Today, 539 million containers are shipped every year from the top 100 ports.
FROM THE THINGS CONTAINER:
Pancake ingredients: vanilla essence from Madagascar, bicarb soda mined in Canada, and synthesized in China. The total distance by sea: 41,881 kilometres.
The wood of Freedom table was from the Appalachian mountains in the USA, while the MDF was from Vietnam. Total distance by sea: 28,202 kilometres.
The dining chairs, a popular look with beech legs and white plastic seats. Total distance by sea: 14,175 kilometres.
Coffee from Brazil, glasses from Slovakia, china and cutlery from China, a plunger made in Portugal, with glass from Germany, and shipped to Australia via Rotterdam, Holland, a rug from India, and a grey on-trend sofa from China and Argentina.
Tracking the mobile phone left on on everyone's kitchen table was more difficult because it includes sensors from Taiwan, a screen from the United States, and parts from Germany, South Korea, The Netherlands, Singapore and other places. Total distance by sea: 116,822 kilometres, possibly much more.
– with Julie Power