With plastics in museums decomposing, a new effort seeks to halt the demise of materials commonly thought to be unalterable
Because plastic products can be mass-produced cheaply, they have long been considered the poster child of a throwaway culture. Plastics are versatile: Some are soft and flexible, but others are completely rigid. A few mimic natural substances; some are infused with colors rarely found in nature. Others are as clear as glass. And some polymer substances composing plastics can be molded into shapes impossible to reproduce with materials such as wood.