20,000 Beans Under the Sea

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The sculpture can be seen from outside the BSA.

This past weekend, Payette participated in CANstruction Boston 2017. The annual competition offers architects, engineers and students a chance to both flex their design skills and give back to the community. Sculptures built with non-perishable food products fill the gallery spaces of the Boston Society of Architects (BSA) as well as both of the Atlantic Wharf lobbies; they will be taken down when the exhibit closes at the end of this month and donated to the Merrimack Valley Food Bank in Lowell, Massachusetts. The Boston chapter of CANstruction has steadily grown since its founding in 1995 and Payette has participated every year since 2000.


The design concept depicts the creature attacking a boat.

The theme for this year’s event was Folklore, Fairy Tales, and Mythical Creatures. Our concept, chosen through an office-wide vote, was The Kraken. Much like the legendary sea creature, our sculpture reveals only a fraction of its impressive size – the tips of its giant tentacles – leaving the majority of its body to the imagination of the viewer.

Still, the longest tentacle stands almost eight feet tall and each is composed of striking, blue Heinz Beans cans. Rows of mini Nestle Pure Life water bottles turned on their side imitate suction cups on each tentacle and feature LED lights behind them, illuminating the sculpture at night. The tip of a sinking boat, built from two different canned pea products, sits between the tentacles as if the creature is devouring the entire vessel from below. In total, around 2,000 cans and bottles were used to complete the sculpture.


Close-ups of the Heinz Bean can and water bottles used to construct each tentacle.

The sculptures will be on view at the BSA and Atlantic Wharf Lobbies (280 and 290 Congress Street) from now until Friday, October 27th and the exhibit is free and open to the public.

Please vote for our entry by liking the photo of it in the official CANstruction Facebook page photo album! Voting ends this Wednesday, October 11th at 1:00 PM.
Click HERE to Vote!


The completed sculpture includes 3 tentacles and the tip of a sinking boat.

Payette Team:
Co-Captains: Liz Cooney, Adam Wagner
Megan Brown, Garrett House, Tyler Loewen, Parke MacDowell, Tanguy Marquis, Becca McGee, Dan Russoniello, Marina Sosner, Yuan Zhang

Follow CANstruction Boston here:
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