Art & Objects

23
APR
2012

Capturing Resonance installation by Soo Sunny Park

Capturing Resonance is a beautiful installation by sculptor Soo Sunny Park and composer Spencer Topel.  This is a multi-sensory space and ‘sculptural soundscape’ using chain-link fencing and plexi-glass. As the natural light shines in, the projected image shifts in... Read More →
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18
APR
2012

Magazine collage portraits by Derek Gores

Derek Gores from Florida has been a successful commercial designer and illustrator for fifteen years and is famed for his collage portraits made from recycled magazines, labels and found materials.  Influenced by Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele and Max Ernst, he says he isn’t... Read More →
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12
MAR
2012

Jewellery from Thames River treasure by Alexandra Abraham

Alexandra Abraham is a British artist who works with acrylics, mixed media and 23 carat gold leaf. Her unique jewellery and paintings make use of found objects and collected ephemera such as old china and glass fragments picked up on the Thames Foreshore as well as old coins,... Read More →
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16
JAN
2012

Waste People sculpture by H A Schult

It’s taken me this long to discover the work of artist H A Schult.  Surprising given the extent to which his ‘Trash People’ have made their way to virtually every corner of the globe.  A representation of our wasteful society, Schult’s army of sculptures... Read More →
05
JAN
2012

Spiralling tower sculpture made from books by Matej Kren

Idiom is a spiralling tower of books housed in Prague’s Municipal Library by Slovakian artist Matej Kren.  The tower is made of hundreds of books that are stacked ‘Jenga’ style up to the ceiling.  A tear in the tower allows you to peer inside where a mirror... Read More →
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04
JAN
2012

RIP Traffic Light Tree by Pierre Vivant

Just as everyone starts thinking about taking down their Christmas decorations, the Traffic Light tree would ordinarily have gone on to twinkle all year round.  As of last month, the tree by French sculptor Pierre Vivant is sadly no more, having been removed for road... Read More →
30
DEC
2011

Sculpture made from wire hangers by David Mach

Ever find yourself wondering what to do with those useless wire coat hangers you get from the dry cleaners?  Scottish sculptor David Mach puts them to extremely good use by creating incredible giant sculptures out of them.  Other ‘found art’ objects used in his work... Read More →
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28
DEC
2011

Plectrum mosaic by Ed Chapman

Very impressed by the work of UK mosaic artist Ed Chapman who created this awesome mosaic of Jimi Hendrix out of 5000 guitar plectrums earlier this year. It was auctioned at Cancer Research UK’s Sound and Vision event at Abbey Road Studios and sold for £23,000. Via Recyclart Read More →
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18
DEC
2011

Upcycled musical instruments on Scrapheap Orchestra

Upcyclists of scrapyard treasure would have been particularly interested in a programme aired on BBC Four last weekend ‘ Scrapheap Orchestra.’  This documented the story of the BBC Concert Orchestra who were challenged to play Tchaikovsky’s 1812 overture at the... Read More →
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14
DEC
2011

Sculpture made from fake fingernails by Laurel Roth

These bird sculptures by Laurel Roth are made from fake fingernails, hair clips, nail polish, false eyelashes, and jewellery.  The artist’s work highlights choices involved in biological processes unique to humankind and in this case the birds have borrowed ‘human... Read More →
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12
DEC
2011

Lexus creates high fashion from car parts

Lady Gaga may have a lot to answer for, but here’s a bit of new ground she’s yet to break.  Hats off to Lexus for highlighting beautiful recycling with the Lexus Fashion Workshop.  They challenged four designers to re-engineer car parts from the CT hybrid (a vehicle... Read More →
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10
DEC
2011

Lee Borthwick’s scrap wood sculpture

I first saw the work of Scottish artist Lee Borthwick at Tent London this year and thought her stuff was incredible. She makes stunning sculptures from bits of scrap wood and other materials such as laser cut mirror pieces.  With in an education in Textiles and Surface Design... Read More →
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09
DEC
2011

Christmas trees made from recycled materials

In 2008 The Rocks in Sydney began a tradition of building a Christmas tree out of recycled materials.  First it was stacked chairs, in 2009 they utilised 18,000 plastic soft drink bottles and in 2010 they stepped up their game with a tree made of 100 bicycles donated by CMA... Read More →
17
NOV
2011

Brian Mock sculpture made from scrap

Brian Mock from Portland, Oregon makes art crafted from found and recycled materials.  His collection includes fish, robots, cars, ‘human-ish’ sculptures and my personal favourite – the dogs.  Here he manages to capture their natural poise perfectly, using just... Read More →
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11
NOV
2011

Bowerbirds and their upcycling instincts

So today we turn to nature for inspiration.  The Bowerbird is the ultimate upcyclist – a bird that inhabits the tropical regions of New Guinea and northern Australia, famously known for its courtship behaviour (and flair for interior design).  The males build a structure... Read More →
09
NOV
2011

Jason Mecier assemblage portraits

It’s possible you will either love or hate the work of Jason Mecier. Celebrity faces made of beans, noodles and cereal (including a portrait of Condoleezza Rice made from rice) certainly won’t be to everyone’s taste. However, the likeness he is able to create... Read More →
06
NOV
2011

It’s a Rollover

Ever dream of what your house would look like if you won the lottery?  At first glance, this may look like a lavishly decorated interior. ‘Dream Home’ by Brooklyn architects Ghost of a Dream is in fact an installation made entirely from $70,000 worth of discarded... Read More →
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01
NOV
2011

Wine Cork Portraiture

Scott Gunderson is a Michigan artist who utilizes wine corks to make giant portraits.  The corks are collected in his studio and sorted according to tone and colour.  After drawing the portrait from a photograph he affixes them to the portrait backing.  ‘Grace’... Read More →
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31
OCT
2011

Interior of Sedlec Ossuary created from human bones

Now, don’t get me wrong – obviously I am not advocating we should all start upcycling human bones into chandeliers – that would be VERY bad taste. However, Halloween seems to have provided an excuse to share something a bit more macabre than usual… The... Read More →
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26
OCT
2011

Pencils made from newspaper by Treesmart

A lot more than your average HB: Pencils by Treesmart are made from rolled up recycled newspapers.  One single broadsheet of the NY Daily News is all you need to make four of these pencils and you can purchase them here. Image via Ecosalon Read More →
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21
OCT
2011

Paper Trail

I accumulate stacks of magazines and am determined to utilize them for a creative project one day.  Graphic/fashion designer Lia Griffith from Papier Couture has certainly provided some inspiration with her amazing ball gowns made from cut up magazines.  The above dress aptly... Read More →
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16
OCT
2011
Muhammed Ali portrait made from punch bags

Punch Bag Portraiture

Master of creative reuse Michael Kalish has spent the past 15 years perfecting the technique of twisting, cutting and riveting license plates to make iconic portraits.  Earlier this year he unveiled ‘reALIzed’ an incredible image of Muhammed Ali made of 1,300 punch... Read More →
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15
OCT
2011

The Stuff of Dreams

Welcome to the imaginarium of Anya Keeley.  This Hereford artist has from a young age collected found objects and ephemera, enticed by the patina that comes only from age and wear.  Incorporating wire work and collaged books and magazines, objects are assembled into whimsical... Read More →
11
OCT
2011

Silk and Resin

These Light Pipes by UK artist Wendy Allan are made from dyed silk from reclaimed sari material. This is then woven and captured in resin resulting in a beautiful translucent amalgamation of colour, almost like stained glass.  The resin preserves the unexpected imperfections and... Read More →
07
OCT
2011

Lord of the Rings

Crafting things from old books is always a controversial subject but you have to admit the concept behind Littlefly is pretty unique.  Jeremy Mays is a jewellery designer and landscape architect who makes jewellery from cross-sections of old second hand books through a process of... Read More →
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04
OCT
2011

Power of Making

This weekend I saw the the Power of Making at the V&A – an exhibition of 100 exquisitely crafted objects by both amateurs and leading makers from around the world.  Here I was introduced to the exceptional work of Yong Ho Ji, a Korean artist who uses layers of shredded... Read More →
22
SEP
2011

The Die is Cast

These fascinating works are by Korean artist Kim Hyun who makes figurative sculptures using wire and dice, moulding them into human forms.  In order to convey an authentic human like stance, Hyun uses plaster casts of people then runs wire through the dice to recreate the... Read More →
16
SEP
2011

Dataface by Nick Gentry

Last night I went to see ‘Dataface,’ a solo exhibition of new work by British artist Nick Gentry who paints onto canvases made of obsolete media such as 3.5inch floppy disks. Nick says, “Much of what goes on in the work is about leaving spaces to question... Read More →
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12
SEP
2011

Light Relief: Saatchi Gallery

Yesterday I ventured to the King’s Road Saatchi Gallery for the first time.  I think it’s fair to say that some of the artwork there is quite literally the stuff of nightmares.  Scary, oompa loompa-like creatures, contorted horse carcasses, angels having an orgy and... Read More →
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06
SEP
2011

Driftwood Sculptures by Heather Jansch

Some works of art are simply breathtaking and these driftwood equestrian sculptures certainly belong in that category.  The genius behind them is Heather Jansch from Devon, UK.  Inspired by Leonardo da Vinci and beginning her career as an equestrian painter, she captures the... Read More →
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29
AUG
2011

Book Beads

It’s not every day you find a book that’s redesigned to be worn around the neck.  Artist Phiona Richards creates interactive book sculptures and jewellery through traditional needlework techniques. These methods make items like this Five Bead Paper Necklace... Read More →
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25
AUG
2011

Ctrl+Alt+Delete

A depiction of a night sky?  Get up close and personal with ‘Debris, QWERTY’ by Sarah Frost and you’ll see it’s made entirely of recycled computer keys.  The American artist works with waste materials which are taken out of context to become though... Read More →
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11
AUG
2011

Animal Instinct

This is ‘Cheetah’ by Andrew Chase from Salt Lake City, Utah.  This beautiful, fully articulated cheetah weighs about 23kg and is constructed out of electrical conduit, auto transmission parts, 20-gauge steel and random parts found in an industrial salvage yard. ... Read More →
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06
AUG
2011

Pop-up sculpture made from books by Thomas Allen

It’s a fine feat to turn books into sculpture, but artist Thomas Allen takes this one step further, with fascinating results. He cuts people and things out of old pulp fiction novels, kids books and anatomy textbooks and reassembles them into a scene. He then photographs... Read More →
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01
AUG
2011

Plastic Organic

Caroline Saul is a talented Brighton based designer-maker who works with recycled plastics, essentially making new materials from objects that would otherwise be thrown away. She describes her work as a process-led exploration of colour, texture, material, patterning, shape and... Read More →
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26
JUL
2011

Hanging by a Thread

New York installation artist Devorah Sperber certainly knows a thing or two about making magic from ordinary objects.  She is famed for her use of optical illusions, particularly in her Thread Spool Works pictured here.  Thousands of spools of thread are hung to recreate... Read More →
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11
JUL
2011

All a Flutter

I first came across the work of Rebecca J Coles at The Bungeroosh Gallery during this year’s Brighton Festival.  She makes beautiful three-dimensional decorative forms that are individually hand cut from carefully selected paper that would otherwise be discarded or thrown... Read More →
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10
JUL
2011

New Designers 2011

I was pleased to finally get down to the New Designers exhibition in Angel this weekend – the biggest graduate design show in the UK. Amidst a wealth of talent, a noteworthy project for me was ‘No News is Good News’ by Suzie Button from Bristol UWE which also... Read More →
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07
JUL
2011

Textured Textiles

I’ve been meaning to share this for a while – the fantastic work of author and textile artist Ruth Singer. Inspired by historical textiles, museum objects, personal heritage, memory and stories, Ruth creates one-off textile artworks and products using sustainable and... Read More →
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05
JUL
2011
Assemblage necklace by Clementine James

Treasure Trove

Clementine James of Little Glass Clementine is a self-taught artist. Each wonderful piece of jewellery is a narrative of collected treasure, discarded objects and precious gems. Comprising anything from a pebble found on the Scottish shores to a button from her... Read More →
22
JUN
2011

Weird and Wonderful

Having just stumbled across this article on Belgian talent Erik Zwaga, it wasn’t going to be long before I’d start raving about his upcycled art. In addition to the humorous and surrealist aspect to his work, I love the way he groups twee decorative objects to create... Read More →
20
JUN
2011

Canopy of Cups

This canopy is made of waste cups created by attendees of the Outside Lands concert in San Francisco.  The project by BIOS Design Collective involved stringing steel cable mesh above the Stable Cafe patio in equidistant lines. Designer Chris Chalmers created the layout for the... Read More →
13
JUN
2011

Installations by Susie MacMurray

It’s impossible not to be blown away by the work of Susie MacMurray – a former classical musician turned artist whose work encompasses drawing, sculpture and architectural installations.  She has gained particular recognition for her site-specific interventions in... Read More →
23
MAY
2011

Grand designs: a cathedral built entirely from salvage

Certainly one for the bible of eco design… An elderly Benedictine Monk from a quiet Madrid neighbourhood has built an entire cathedral out of reclaimed materials.  After falling ill with tuberculosis, Justo Martinez (aka Don Justo) promised himself that if he recovered, he... Read More →
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21
MAY
2011

City lights: A house made from coloured plexiglass by Tom Fruin

Kolonihavehus is a stunning outdoor sculpture by American artist Tom Fruin. It’s constructed from a thousand pieces of reclaimed plexiglass salvaged from a closed down plexi distributor, a framing shop, the basement of the Danish State Art Workshops and skips outside the... Read More →
01
MAY
2011

Plastic Fantastic: Jewellery made from PET bottles

It’s impossible not to marvel at these stunning pieces by Gülnur Özdağlar which began their lives as plastic bottles.  The Turkish architect who also works in graphic design, photography and digital art has been producing jewellery and home decorations from recycled PET... Read More →
07
DEC
2010

Paper rose made from dollar bills

An expensive genre of upcycling perhaps, but I couldn’t resist! PaperAffection on Etsy make durable origami jewellery, hairgrips and ornaments. This Money Rose is made of five $1 bills. Images via Etsy Read More →
07
DEC
2010

Canopy of white umbrellas by Organelle Design

Another gem in Organelle Design’s portfolio is GO! Gallery – a collaborative project which involved creating a temporary gallery in a forgotten courtyard at the heart of Vancouver’s Chinatown. A sculptural umbrella canopy hung above the chosen site to create an... Read More →