You probably know the well known saying “one person’s junk is another person’s treasure”. Well I think this perfectly describes “trash art”. Here in Indonesia, I took an art class where we learned how to create art using plastic. We turned plastic bags and bottles into amazing art pieces.
This form of art is often called “trash art”, “junk art” or “recycled art”. Trash art is also considered a form of “upcycling”. Artists are taking everyday items that would normally end up in the garbage and turning them into something new. Trash art can also be a way to promote a closed-loop system—an ideal system where things are re-used again and again and no waste is created.
Beyond the fact that these art pieces are creative and innovative, I believe the way these art pieces are created and displayed can be very meaningful. For example, trash art installations could be representative of the immense amount of trash we create. I have seen plastic bottle art installations, pop-can structures, and colourful trash sculptures. I believe this type of art is a unique way of bringing forth the issue of consumerist waste. Art can be a direct way to grab someone’s attention in a thought-provoking way.
Richard Lang and Judith Selby, a couple who founded an organization called Plastic Forever, collect plastic from their local beaches and turn it into art. They have created lawn balls, sculptures, jewelry and much more. Their goal is to create awareness of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch and the alarmingly large quantity of plastic in our oceans.
I think trash art is a very interesting and innovative way to bring up important issues surrounding waste. Although there is never a perfect solution to any problem, I think every idea is worth exploring and trying. I would love to hear your thoughts on Trash Art!
Have you ever heard of trash art and/or have you ever made your own trash art?
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