Art also comes in handy when it comes to preserving the environment in which we live: works made with recycled materials are the new trend.
You will surely have seen very original works, paintings and sculptures that use recycled material to come to light. This method helps not only to make the planet cleaner but also to make the use of new content more interesting.
An example are the works of Ranya Art, stage name of Pamela P., born in Rome and always attentive to the environment. His sculptures reproduce faces in perfect classic style, mixed with punk and steampunk. In fact, there is no shortage of typical glasses or monocles made from waste materials which, thrown in the garbage, come back to life once assembled in new and original shapes. As Ranya Art tells us, each of his compositions can contain from 500 to 700 electronic components, deriving from video recorders, DVD players (list of the best products ) , consoles and so on, in short, all parts that are no longer needed and that would end up being compacted in landfills. .
The genius of his work manages to transform these disused objects into a contemporary work, beautiful to enjoy during an exhibition or to be exhibited in a modern living room. Nothing is left to chance: before assembly, the artist carefully chooses the piece to fit together, to obtain an out of the ordinary effect.
The faces depicted can be of famous people, such as Dali and Chaplin, who take on the guise of punk, mixing vintage with innovation. In fact, one detail is enough to transform a traditional model into a different element than usual.
But how did Ranya Art come up with such a particular idea? The artist tells of being struck by the face of a tattoo artist during the International Tattoo Expo in Rome, of having stolen the details to give life to 26 sculptures that are all called “the boy”.
Although these are quite similar faces, the peculiarity lies in the different expressions for each, which interpret the mood of the artist at the moment in which he created that work. By themselves they express a word and, all together, an entire sentence that brings you closer to the world of Ranya Art.
Bordalo II and Hitotsuyama
The trend towards recycling that becomes art sees other characters interested in paying more attention to the environment. Bordalo II, who creates urban works, comes from Portugal: he starts from a wooden base, to which he adds garbage, plastic sheets, tires, pieces of vehicles and electric cables to create sculptures depicting animals.
As a final detail, Bordalo II adds a spray paint that smooths everything out and infuses a piece of soul into his creature. The artist’s aim is to focus on the problem of pollution, depicting animals and using all those materials that contribute to making them extinct or making them live badly.
Chie Hitotsuyama is from Japan instead and uses paper to make life-size animal sculptures. The artist uses a team to bring his works to life, which have an impressive correspondence with reality.
How do they do it? A bit like papier-mâché: first they wet it, then twist and roll it, shaping it with their hands to make it take the desired shape. The great originality lies in choosing colored paper, to create the shades that make the animal depicted more real. Particular attention was paid to endangered species, such as manatees, turtles and rhinoceros. The effect is incredible!
Jane Perkins and Elizabeth Moss
The British artist Jane Perkins, whose activity is interested in giving life to collages by putting together waste materials, is instead involved in the creation of paintings with recycled materials. However, these are not new subjects, but the reproduction of already famous paintings, such as Van Gogh’s Sunflowers or Leonardo’s La Gioconda. What the artist wants to achieve is the astonishment of the observer, who understands how a familiar object and usually useful for other functions becomes an integral part of a composition already seen in other forms.
The realization times are quite long, as Perkins must be able to find the right combination of colors, which helps the eye to identify exactly the subject depicted.
Elizabeth Moss instead creates innovative paintings and sculptures, which have an ethnic flavor and are based on the assembly of recycled materials. To find them, the artist takes a tour of several deposits and identifies what might be fine to achieve the final result.
Fusing the interest in the environment with one’s art makes the work carried out more important for Moss, centered on the need to move souls towards greater attention to the planet and pollution.
Gyre: The Plastic Ocean
The Anchorage Museum in Alaska has organized a traveling exhibition that aims to stimulate the attention of users to global pollution. The works included are in fact made with waste materials, specially recycled to take on a new shape.
These are caps, plastic bottles and all such elements, which are intended to make visible what the planet undergoes.
The geek works
There are not a few artists who recycle electronic components to create new forms. Even companies are not exempt from such attempts: think of Asus, which has put together several disused motherboards, to represent a very particular Mona Lisa.
Then there are box sets made of circuits, skulls obtained by assembling pieces of old keyboards, and installations, such as that of Clemence Eliard and Elise Morin, who put together about 65,000 CDs, creating a surface similar to that of a rough sea.
The Great Artspectations exhibition in Edinburgh saw the installation of Sandy Smith, an artist who put together many colored monitors to form a wall. What about the Sci-Fi masks, created with disused electronic components?
In the United Kingdom, an imposing sculpture was also made, called WEEE man, a 7 meter tall robot. But there is no shortage of very original ideas, more than those we have listed so far: a wedding ring, complete with a Delete key embedded … not really a nice premise! They look like museum objects, in reality many are for sale and are really of great impact, if displayed in the right environment.