July 13, 2017 3:59 pm
Updated: July 13, 2017 5:41 pm

Artist from Portugal hopes mural will help protect New Brunswick’s wood turtle

WATCH: Art and activism have come together in the form of a mural at a Moncton art festival. As Shelley Steeves reports the artist hopes to protect the very species he is trying to create.

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Art and activism have come together in the form of a mural that the artist hopes will inspire others to protect the very species he’s trying to create — the wood turtle.

“I makes images and portraits of animals or elements of the nature with what kills them, the pollution, the trash, the contamination,” said Artur Bordalo, a mural artist from Portugal who goes by Bordalo II.

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Bordalo has traveled the world creating a series of works called Big Trash Animals. He says he’s trying to draw attention to the issues waste products can have on wildlife.

“It’s all the stuff that should be recycled and all the stuff you can find where it is not supposed to be.”

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Bordalo is in Moncton this week for Festival Inspire and is working with the Petitcodiac Watershed Alliance to help protect the wood turtle. It’s an at-risk-species that tries to makes its home along the Petitcodiac River.

Christine McLaughlan, from the Petitcodiac Watershed Alliance, says it’s been a struggle to do that.

“We have quite a bit of pollution along our waterways which is unfortunate still,” she said.

A lot of the trash that forms the mural is made of plastic, a decision which McLaughlan says is fitting.

The discarded plastic left lying along a river can be mistaken as food by turtles, often producing a deadly result.

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Bordalo is hoping that his creation will create more awareness among people who come to see his work. He says people are often oblivious to the impact that littering along rivers can have.

“I hope that some people will understand what we are talking about and start thinking,” he said.

A panel will be placed beside the mural  that tells the story of the wood turtle and what people can do to help protect it.

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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