Whether a work of art is aesthetically pleasing or not, is totally subjective, but we should start to consider whether the materials used in the making of the piece have been sustainably produced. The Thirties oak
wardrobe on the right has been upcycled with the sole intention of investigating how man interacts with nature. The use of conkers, moss and paint rescued from a skip represents the profiligacy of society today.
Catri created this from nature’s discarded produce that she found lying around the woods at Clue Hill Farm and she recycled them to decorate the exterior of the wardrobe. This is a very sustainable and eco-friendly use of natural materials, but by applying the paint, which was rescued from landfill, the wardrobe starts to interact with man and takes on a totally different identity.
Interestingly, some three years later, the moss still remains a vibrant green colour. It is difficult to decide whether the wardrobe should remain part of the woods, or become a centre piece in the house. It fits easily in either location.
Nature does not know the concept of waste; the only species capable of making something no one desires is the human species.” - Gunter Pauli, Zero Emissions Research and Initiatives
However, if you can recycle that waste, by re-imaging it and use it to recreate something special to cherish, then all is not lost.
Catri found this abandoned car and upcycled it totally from items which had been thrown away. The effect is extremely striking and from being a rusting heap of metal, was transformed immediately into an iconic symbol of Recycled Art.
This is what is happening at http://www.digitaluniverse.net/upcycling/ Here they are working with communities around the world and as they develop their expertise, so they can start to develop their influence on a global platform.
Gikomba is a part of Nairobi that is well known for metal working and it is here that the people have been practising Recycled Art and Upcycling in a totally sustainable and eco-friendly way http://www.trunity.net/upcycling/articles/view/158548/. What is so interesting about Recycled Art, is that is has a worldwide appeal, not just a buzz word in the developing countries. The practice can be adopted by anyone, just so long as they understand the value of re-using everything.