Tag Archives: trash

New Animalistic Trash Sculptures by Bordalo II Spring Up Around the Globe 

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Instead of contemplating a series of sketches or attempting to envision how an artwork will come together, Portuguese artist Bordalo II (previously here and here) begins each of his animal sculptures in a grimy hunt for raw materials in junk yards or abandoned factories. Car bumpers, tires, door panels, mountains of malleable plastic bumpers, and even entire vehicles are stacked and bolted to the sides of buildings to resemble everything from pelicans to foxes and tiny rodents. The pieces grow on-site, taking form as he interprets the available materials. As a final detail each animal is finished with a flourish of spray paint that bestows a near lifelike quality.

Through his art, Bordalo II hopes to draw attention to our culture’s uncontrollable production of waste. “The idea is to depict nature itself, in this case animals, out of materials that are responsible for [their] destruction,” he shares with Colossal. In this way he hopes to make environmental destruction more visible. “Sometimes people don’t recognize that their simple routines are too much, we are using too many resources too fast and turning them into trash, waste, and pollution.”

Bordalo II was one of many artists recently involved with the Unexpected art project curated by JustKids in Ft. Smith, Arkansas where he created a new fox and opossum. He also constructed a flying squirrel at Street Art Jam 2016 in Estonia, and several pieces for the Aruba Art Fair. You can follow his recent work on Instagram.

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Drawings on Discarded Trash Left in Public Places by Artist Wenyi 

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Chinese artist Wenyi wanders the streets of his home in Dali, Yunnan Province, China, gathering bits of discarded cardboard to use as his canvas. Wenyi then takes the bits of trash he finds and draws the surroundings on each object. The small pieces range from quick black and white sketches to colorful drawings of entire homes, each a snapshot of his hometown. After sketching the scenery Wenyi places his completed works back into their original locations, imbuing the everyday refuse with art. “I want people to see art in our everyday life,” said Wenyi to Bored Panda, “even if it’s on wasted paper.” (via Booooooom, Bored Panda)

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Discarded Fishing Nets and Other Ocean Trash Repurposed Into Running Shoes 

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Image via Adidas

Stitched with thread produced from discarded fishing nets, Adidas‘ newest shoes are a collaboration with the ocean activist collective and company Parley for the Oceans. The idea for the shoe was hatched last year, but was more of a idealistic prototype than a ready-to-wear option for the masses. Today however, Adidas is releasing fifty pairs of the sneaker, a shoe composed of more than 16 old plastic bottles and 13 grams of gill nets.

This limited number of pairs is due to the difficult task of taking the collected trash and spinning it into fiber suitable for high performance shoes. Plastic bottles are relatively easy to transform into a useable material, but when it comes to the gill nets (which emit the smell of rotting fish) the task is a bit more difficult. Not only is the smell difficult to scrub from the nets, but the nylon is extra tough and requires being ground into a powder before it can be reformed into a material fit for the Adidas sneaker.

To collect these environmentally damaging materials, Parley partners with small countries that have large ties to marine pollution—locations like the Maldives, Grenada, and Jamaica. After partnering, Parley team members help clean up fisheries and other oceanside spots while teaching locals alternatives to using plastic in their businesses. The materials collected by Parley are then distributed not only to Adidas, but also institutions such as Parsons School of Design, which might help change the way new generations of designers think about incorporating these materials into future designs.

An announcement will be made soon on how to win one of the 50 released pairs of the collaborative shoe on Adidas’ Instagram.

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photo credit: Giacomo Giorigi / Sea Shepherd Global

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Earthships: Meet a Community in New Mexico Living in Incredible Off-The-Grid Homes Built From Trash 

Fresh out of architectural school in 1972, Michael Reynolds immediately started to question much of what he had just learned. Why build houses with trees when forests are something we want to preserve? Why pay for electricity, water, and heat when all of it can be provided off-the-grid using existing materials and renewable resources like wind, rain, and solar?

Reynolds set out to design a home built from dirt, tires, aluminum cans and other repurposed objects and so successful others began to take notice. Now, an entire community lives in these unusual homes called ‘Earthships’ in Taos, New Mexico. Filmmakers Flora Lichtman and Katherine Wells recently stopped by to learn more. (via Devour)

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Kenyan Artist Digs Through Electronic Refuse and Found Metal to Create Dazzling Sculptural Eyewear 

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Digging through electronic refuse and found metal in Kenya’s capital of Nairobi, Cyrus Kabiru refashions found materials into different wearable forms. Often these take the form of flamboyantly composed glasses, large eyewear that can often mask the entire face.

Kabiru explains that his glasses obsession started at a young age, and blossomed as his father crushed his dreams of owning his own pair. “When I was young, I used to admire real glasses but my dad was a bit harsh and he never wanted me to have real glasses. That’s the reason I started making the glasses.”

His creations situate themselves in several different areas of art, shuffling between performance, sculpture, and fashion—embodying the playfulness of the youth generation in Nairobi. “When you walk in town and you see someone with my glasses, the glasses will [get] all your attention,” said Kabiru. “If you have any stress it is like a therapy.”

In addition to his found object sculptures and glasses, Kabiru is a self-taught painter, his subject matter being humorous portrayal of contemporary Kenyan life. His most recent series uses thousands of bottle caps sewn together to depict African nature. “I really love trash. I try to give trash a second chance. I change it to be something else, which is like it will stay for more than 100 years now.” (via prosthetic knowledge)

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Discarded Plastic Fishing Nets Retrieved from the Ocean Used in New Shoe Prototype 

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Adidas is now designing shoes from our oceans’ detritus, recently producing the world’s first prototype with parts constructed from ocean plastic and illegal deep-sea gillnets. The athletic apparel manufacture partnered with Parley for the Oceans as collaborators, a group of creators, thinkers, and leaders who design projects that aim to end the destruction of our oceans.

The community explains, “Our oceans are about to collapse and there is not much time to turn it around. Nobody can solve this alone. Everyone has to be a part of the solution. And collaboration is the magic formula.”

An ally of Parley, the Sea Shepard Conservation Society, collected the materials for the shoe while tracking an outlawed poaching vessel off the coast of West Africa. The concept for the shoe was then created in just six days, the prototype showcased at the UnxParley launch event in New York on June 29.

Parley explains that this concept is only the beginning, but is an example of how impactful creative collaboration is. “The problems we face are many, but so are the solutions. Stay tuned to learn more about how Parley will end ocean plastic pollution.” Although the partners have explained that this specific concept might never be commercially available, Adidas plans to introduce recycled plastic into their manufacturing process by early next year. (via My Modern Met)

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photo credit: Giacomo Giorigi / Sea Shepherd Global

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