25+ Awesome Examples of Artistic Repurposing of Junk

Trash and junk transformed into art and sculpture

It’s no secret we love junk here at Trash Talk, and now we want to share the beautiful side of garbage with you. These are some of the best examples of junk turned into artistic masterpieces—just another creative and unique way to reuse things rather than send them off to the landfill.

Junk Mail, Post Cards, Advertising

Artist Sandhi Schimmel Gold makes use of the stuff that typically goes straight from the mailbox to the trash can and turns it into beautiful art. The painting/collage masterpieces are constructed using junk mail, post cards, and other advertising materials that flood mailboxes each and every weekday. The art is not only spectacular in terms of appearance, but it’s also a perfect example of how to repurpose junk into works of art – a concept referred to as “upcycling.”

Schimmel art

Via: Schimmel Art

Recycled Records

What to do with all those old records?...[light bulb]...I know—how ‘bout forming them into a giant ball! The giant ball of records is on location at the University of Art and Design in Germany. The awesome tidal wave of records, titled “Sound Wave,” is on location at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in New York.

recycled records

Via: Flickr: gynti_46, Trend Hunter

Magazine Repurposing

Magazines are plentiful in the U.S., and most of them end up in landfills. However, magazines are surprisingly versatile. They can be repurposed into unique furniture or art. This example shows how coiled magazines formed in a circular pattern make for a perfect piece of wall art.

magazine art

Via: Trend Hunter

Is household junk starting to pile up in your garage, attic, or basement?

Hitting the Lotto Without Actually Winning

This installation was featured at Art Prize 2011 in Grand Rapids, MI, which is the largest art festival of its kind in the world. The artist used lotto tickets to create an incredible living room scene. No doubt this work of art took quite a few painstaking hours to complete, but it was all well worth it in my opinion.

lottery ticket living room art

Book Pages Recycled into Art

Another cool example of trash art exhibited at Art Prize is the book pages sculptures created by artist Christopher Yockey. The artist filled an entire room with 10-foot-tall arches formed from thousands of torn book pages.

art installation made from pages of a book

Old Computers and Monitors

Artist Sandy Smith takes old, rundown computers and monitors and breathes new life into them. She has created several large-scale installations, including one titled “Mauritian Sunset” that pieces together old computer parts to form an entire wall complete with a doorway. The installation uses color to bring the installation to life. Smith also pieced together old computer parts to form a more than 12-foot-tall sculpture titled “Pope, Pop & Terror”. The title was derived from the three most popular Google Image search terms in 2005. When lit, the sculpture forms a crucifix shape. This is one creative way to e-cycle.

art-computer parts-sandy smith

Via: Sandy Smith – Computer Installations

Recycled Metal Robots and Sculptures

Kinetic sculptor Nemo Gould repurposes everyday items, like wooden chairs, metal parts, and scraps, into art. He turns trash into robots that actually move and have features that light up. His works were exhibited at San Jose Museum’s “Robots: Evolution of a Cultural Icon” show in 2008.

Like Gould, artist Jeremy Mayer turns recycled scraps into amazing sculptures. However, Mayer’s medium of choice is old, beat-up typewriters. Typewriters have long been considered obsolete in terms of their actual functionality, but artists can still make use of this ancient technology in creative ways. It takes about 40 typewriters for Mayer to construct a full-size sculpture of a figure. Disassembling each typewriter and fashioning it into a sculpture of a full-grown human takes about 1,000 hours. His work is very Teminator-esque, don't you think?

7-typewriter art-jeremy mayer

Via: Wired

Disposable Junk Turned Treasure

Artist Jill Townsley doesn’t throw her plastic spoon away when she’s done eating. Instead, she collects them and makes extraordinary art, like the huge pyramid she constructed out of 9,000 plastic spoons connected by 3,000 rubber bands. If that’s not impressive enough, check out this spectacular gown fit for a bride. Its creator, Susi Macmurry, fashioned the dress entirely out of latex gloves. Both the pyramid and the gown were on display at the Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) during the exhibition titled “Second Lives: Remixing the Ordinary”.

Via: DesignSponge

The Junk Doctor

Tom Deininger should be considered a doctor of junk, since he can bring artistic life to virtually any type of trash he finds on the street. The Rhode Island artist uses everything—from scrap metal to cigarette butts—to create magnificent art. Below are just a few of his pieces. You have to check out his online gallery to really appreciate the intricacies of his work.

Timelapse self-portrat-Tom Deininger

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