United States


Lonely Whale’s Museum of Plastic

Entrant Company

Young Hero


Experiential & Immersive

Client's Name

Lonely Whale


Exhibition Experiences (NEW)

Lonely Whale creates comprehensive marketing strategies and tactics, including experiential activations, to drive positive, quantifiable impacts for ocean health and believe that conservation communications need dramatic transformation to effect real change. Taking a cue from advertising innovators, Lonely Whale turned to influencer-driven pop culture campaign models. The pop-up Museum of Plastic is the experiential tentpole of Lonely Whale’s “Question How You Hydrate” campaign targeting single-use plastic water bottles. 500 billion plastic bottles are used around the globe annually, are among the top five items found in beach cleanups and by 2022, consumers are projected to spend $200 billion on single-use plastic water bottles. To address this seemingly unsolvable problem, Lonely Whale opened a surprising, consumer-focused educational pop-up experience: the Museum of Plastic. The Museum opened in NYC during World Oceans Week, welcoming 10,000+ visitors over six days, and again during Miami’s Art Basel, earning 21M+ social impressions with notable appearances from DJ Diplo, Brazilian actress and model Adriana Lima, and designer Heron Preston. The activation told the origin story of the plastic water bottle, and ways that visitors can make a difference in solving this problem. When visitors entered the Museum, they were greeted with the Plastic Service Announcement (PSA), featuring Jason Momoa, Zooey Dechanel, Vic Mensa, Aidan Gallagher and other celebrities committing to giving up single-use plastic water bottles. Interactive experiences included an immersive coral lounge, speaking to the sensitivity between coral reefs and plastic pollution; an installation illustrating the difference between a plastic-polluted ocean and an ocean free from plastic; and information outlining sustainable alternatives to plastic water bottles. The exhibition helped visitors understand, in detail, the size of the problem with statistics pulled directly from the plastic water bottle manufacturing industry. As visitors left the Museum, they too joined the #HydrateLike movement by pledging to no longer use single-use plastic water bottles. The Museum awakened imaginations and built a cross-generational community by integrating digital dialogue into real-life experiences. The Museum achieved a 30% conversion on #HydrateLike call-to-action by individual and group visitors committing to #HydrateLike future generations matter and share their pledges online.


Lonely Whale, Executive Director
Dune Ives
Lonely Whale, Co-Deputy Director & Strategy Lead, Only One (Lonely Whale/SeaLegacy/Blue Sphere Foundation)
Emma Riley
Lonely Whale, Director of Digital Strategy
Emy Kane
Point Break Foundation, Director Of Operations and Associate Director of Foundations
Rosie O’Connor
Young Hero, Co-Founder
Zoë Bunyard
Young Hero, Co-Founder and Executive Creative Director
Nick Panayotopoulos
Young Hero, President
Roberto Max Salas
Young Hero, Program Director
Kaitlyn Parks
Young Hero, Creative Director
Kevin Li
Young Hero, Project Manager
Elise Laporte
Filmmaker, Director of PSA and digital content
Matthew Dillon Cohen
Figment, Founder
Min Liu
Figment, Producer
Kat Heiberger
Figment, Sponsorships Director
Danny Witte
Optical Animal, Artist
Optical Animal team
Yes Creative, Artist
Kiersten Stevens
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