HomeThe Art of Recycling Mural Project

About the project

The Art of Recycling logo

The Art of Recycling is a traveling mural project in Chittenden County, Vermont that celebrates recycling. In this fusion of art and recycling, we commissioned local artists to paint murals on some our 22-foot-long recycling containers to create a more engaged recycling experience while drawing attention to our community’s efforts to reduce waste. The project set a goal of using at least 25% reclaimed or recycled resources in the production of the murals, including a lot of leftover paint collected at the CSWD Environmental Depot.

CSWD’s mission is to use economically and environmentally sound methods to reduce and manage waste in Chittenden County. Over the last 28 years our county has become a national model for waste reduction and recycling efforts. The Art of Recycling Mural Project is a celebration of the thousands of individual actions that drive our community’s collective success. Visit our About Us page to learn more about CSWD’s milestones and our history of innovative thinking.

These container murals can be seen in rotation at 5 of CSWD’s 7 Drop-Off Centers: Burlington, Hinesburg, Milton, Richmond, and Williston.

This project was made possible by a generous public art grant from Dealer.com.

About our community

Chittenden County has a reputation for one of the most innovative and successful recycling and waste reduction programs in the USA. But recycling is bigger than a single person, or even a single organization. It takes friends and neighbors, college students and business owners, truck drivers and police officers. It takes all of us to make it a success. Last year in Chittenden County we kept 80 million pounds of recyclable resources out of the landfill. That’s a lot! The Art of Recycling is a celebration of all of you – the Chittenden County residents & businesses who continue to make our county a more beautiful place to live.Ultimately, recycling is just one part of a much bigger, more beautiful landscape of ideas. (It’s not a coincidence that “recycling” comes last in the mantra “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.” There are more responsible ways of dealing with “stuff.”) Recycling is important, but it’s also just one word in a much larger message of sustainability: A message that every decision you make about the stuff you use helps to build a more thoughtful, responsible community that we all care about and love to live in.

About the artists

Read more about the artists involved in the project:

Mary Lacy, photo by Brendan McInerney

Mary Lacy

Mary Lacy, 25, grew up in Jericho, Vermont. After living in New York City for five years, she came back to pursue a career in art in 2014. She is devoted to public art and the greater Burlington community. Her recent works include a residency at the Moran plant, American Flatbread’s ruby-throated hummingbird downtown, and the Dealer.com silos.

@mary_lacy | #marylacy


Anthill Collective

Anthill Collective

Anthill Collective weighs in at a combined 1597 pounds. Their work, painted almost exclusively with aerosol, is often edgy, always vibrant and regularly raises the question, “Did you do this all with spray paint?” Their early efforts were with the team from Arts Riot, destroying apathy in the heart of the South End Arts District. Since then, the collective has worked collaboratively with Magic Hat, the Seven Days, SEABA, Big Heavy World, Long Trail Brewing, Vermont International Film Festival and many more. The Anthill paint canvases, food trucks, demolition derby cars, walls, rain barrels, mannequins, tanks or anything else that sits still long enough.

@anthillcollective | #anthillcollective

Jeff Hodgdon

Jeff Hodgdon

Jeff Hodgdon was born in Portland, ME, but has lived, traveled, and created art around the country. While living in Austin, TX he helped to establish a street art group known as “No Boundaries Krew,” whose artwork has been featured in a number of gallery shows, as well as on public walls and hundreds of train cars around the United States. Though his study of culinary arts forced him to put aside his paint cans for a while, his move to Burlington, VT in early 2015 reignited his desire to create public art. He loves to collaborate with passionate artists while also exploring his love of food. Jeff is the chef at Revolution Kitchen.


Sloan Collins

Sloan Collins

Sloan Collins, 26, is originally from Sarasota, Florida. After moving to Los Angeles in 2009, he developed a passion for the stencil art form, and for the past four years has been painting commissioned murals in the LA area. Since moving to Burlington in 2015, Sloan has participated in local art events such as Art Hop and Magic Hat’s Wall to Canvas. He works at Sarah Holbrook Community Center.


Sarah-Lee Terrat, photo by David Goodman

Sarah-Lee Terrat

Sarah-Lee Terrat is a professional artist in Waterbury, Vermont. For over thirty years she has created original environmental pieces and selected art collections for corporations, community and travel organizations, healthcare facilities, restaurants, and hotels. In 2015 Sarah-Lee received an Arts in Public Buildings Grant from Vermont Arts Council for a mural project in the Vermont State Office Complex. In 2001 she was chosen to design the Vermont State Quarter, part of a series of national state coin series. She is the owner of YeloDog Design, specializing in illustration, original murals, pet toy design, environmental design, and color consultation. She also teaches visual art classes and residencies.


Abby Manock

Abby Manock

Abby Manock is an artist and visual designer working across mediums in sculpture, drawing, video, interactive performative events, large scale mural painting and set design/fabrication. Both her studio practice and visual design work are rooted in a love for physical and conceptual involvement with materials and all aspects of the process of making. Her work has been exhibited in select institutions and festivals across the US and internationally. Abby received her MFA from Columbia University in 2007 where she is currently an adjunct drawing professor. Abby grew up in Burlington, Vermont and currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

@abbyabbyabbyabbyabbyabby | #abbyabby

Max Hodgson

Max Hodgson

Max is currently living in Brooklyn pursuing a career in music and painting, but travels back to his hometown of Burlington as often as he can. Through the years his art has come out in various forms, more recently focusing on producing murals and other works on a large scale. He enjoys the feeling of satisfaction that comes from stepping back from a finished wall. Max plans to keep adding color to Burlington for years to come.


Clark DerbesWylie Garcia

Clark Derbes & Wylie Garcia

Clark (born in New Orleans, LA) and Wylie (born and raised in Houston, TX) live and work in Burlington, VT. Each has exhibited in museums, galleries, and institutions across the United States. They will be collaborating on a mural for The Art of Recycling.


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See photos of the container murals in progress, with plenty of “behind the scenes” shots in The Art of Recycling.

Stay on top of all of the recycling, composting, and other waste-reduction efforts across Chittenden County with CSWD.

About recycling

A big part of The Art of Recycling is drawing attention to our collective efforts to recycle our community’s resources. You’ll see these colorful containers driving down the road on the back of a truck, often destined for our recycling center, where all of the recyclables that they carry are sorted, baled, and shipped out to be sold and made into new products. It takes a lot of people to make this happen—including YOU! You’re the first line of offense in our fight to reduce waste. Here’s a quick guide to having a bigger impact on the art—and the science—of recycling.


What goes in your bin

If you live in Chittenden County, you may already know this. We recycle really well here (it’s what doesn’t belong that people have a harder time with). But a refresher is always helpful!

  1. PLASTIC containers & packaging: Milk jugs, soda bottles, laundry detergent jugs, clear packaging for electronics & other store-bought items—the kind that’s often impossible to get off, even with scissors.
  2. ALUMINUM cans & tins: Soda cans, pie pans, balled-up aluminum foil (2″ minimum).
  3. CARDBOARD: Packing & shipping boxes (i.e. corrugated cardboard), dry food boxes (i.e. boxboard).
  4. STEEL cans: Food or drink cans.
  5. PAPER: Catalogs & magazines, office paper, notebook paper, and almost all of your mail (even window envelopes!).
  6. GLASS bottles & jars: Drink bottles, food jars.

What doesn’t belong

Maybe you already get these right. But you can also help your friends, family & neighbors get better at recycling, too! (Of course in the nicest, most loving way.) Find a way to reuse them, or throw them in the trash. Some of them can be recycled elsewhere—just not in your blue bin:

  1. NO FOOD RESIDUE: Nothing is recyclable if it has food stuck on it. Make sure your blue bin recyclables are clean & dry—or throw them in the trash.
  2. NO STYROFOAM*: We can’t recycle Styrofoam in Chittenden County.
  3. NO PLASTIC BAGS*: This includes pellet bags, plastic wrap (e.g. wrap from a case of water bottles), and any other kind of filmy plastic.
  4. NO PAPER CUPS*: No paper drink cups of any kind.
  5. NO OIL JUGS: Even if they’re empty, we can’t recycle these or any other kind of hazardous fluid container. Throw them in the trash.

*Read this blog post to find out why.