Unravel ‘Maybe the water is too expensive to wash them’: a short documentary on how Indian women recast and recycle the clothes the West throws away
"We applied recycled LAN cables, which we call Mojamoja – to describe its shaggy, wooly look – and what is called acrylic ball (left-over melted acrylic byproduct pieces) to everything from interior materials to furniture."
"Re-Do Studio is a design studio founded by two friends Gaspard Tine-Beres and Tristan Kopp. They are dedicated to investigating alternative ways of production with the aim of shortening the cycle between the final consumer and the manufacturer." [more inside]
Why the modern bathroom is a wasteful, unhealthy design (The Guardian): "Piped water may be the greatest convenience ever known but our sewage systems and bathrooms are a disaster" [more inside]
Trashswag is a crowdsourced map for people to share and post reusable materials that they spot left outside. It is a resource for creative hobbyists, artists and people conducting renovation works to find unique, salvageable old wood, windows, doors, metal, glass and furniture. So far I think it's mostly Toronto and Montreal but is expanding to other areas.
Treshr makes it easy to give things away, or, the other way around, find free stuff. Everyone has stuff they don’t need anymore. Maybe your child outgrew their old clothes, or you moved to a new place and have old furniture to get rid of. Whatever it is you’re looking for, someone somewhere is trying to throw it away. Treshr is basically a search engine for Freecycle, a nonprofit movement of people who are giving (and getting) stuff for free in their own towns. It's all about reuse and keeping good stuff out of landfills. [via] [more inside]
"We have assembled objects in the form of a human figure, objects of all types that we found here each day and selected for their form and color, to obtain a familial nucleus that is the unity through which the individual forms itself and develops its ability to live and realize itself in the world." Artworks by Dario Tironi. via iGNANT
In a narrow plot next to the Los Angeles River, Charles Ray Walker, 59, has created a refuge of terraced slopes from toys and trash discarded by Angelenos.
It's his home away from homelessness.
It's his home away from homelessness.
The 2009 film Garbage Dreams, which is currently airing on PBS, documents the Zabbaleen a tribe that lives off of collecting and recycling trash from Cairo. They manage to recycle 80% of trash (vs 32% in the U.S.), the highest level in the world, well above most first world recycling levels, using primitive techniques shown in the film. As depicted in the film, and on NPR, since 2003 Cairo has been hiring foreign companies, who recycle much less, taking away their livelihood. They are trying to raise enough money (you can donate, buy a t-shirt or help) to grow their Recycling school, to teach more of their children their practices. Good interview with the film director here.
Enrich your Halloween experience with some seasonally appropriate art: the whimsical and charming SkeleCANS (flapjax recommends: slideshow viewing) from New Orleans' indefatigable Skeleton Krewe.
Electric Junkyard Gamelan is the brainchild of bandleader and composer Terry Dame, and fuses Dame's passions of composing, inventing and building. Originally inspired by traditional Gamelan music from Bali, the group recycles and repurposes everyday objects into musical instruments. While some of their songs do indeed resemble the hypnotic percussive melodies of a Balinese/Javanese gamelan orchestra (The Nutbutter Challenge), other tunes strike out into new, distinctly urban American directions (Ode to Fred Beans). Following the band's motto, "Reuse, Recycle and ROCK," instruments are fashioned from coat hangers and rubber bands, bed frames, old farm equipment, turntable platters, clay pots, saw blades and truck springs. The "Big Barp" rubber-band harp makes a particularly unusual sound. [more inside]
The use of cardboard for things other than packaging is not new to the blue, from detailed artwork to furnature (and even re-making the Tron light cycle scene), and now computer cases. Brenden Macaluso's design is not the first, with a Japanese design from 2005 (the original site is down, but Archive.org has a backup, with more versions archived), and other kludged fixes for an existing case missing parts. Recompute wasn't the only cardboard case in the 2009 Greener Gadgets design competition. The other was Cardboardcase, by Francesco Biasci and Martina Becattini, which is a more of a traditional computer case form. On the DIY side, Instructables provides plans for a DIY cardboard laptop case. [more inside]
Inspired by the creative re-use of dumpsters in Athens, Georgia by Curtis Crowe of the band Pylon, the Macro|Sea collective have taken the idea further, and have their first dumpster pool space prototype up and active in Brooklyn (via). The group's big idea is to revitalize strip malls across America. On the smaller scale, British artist Oliver Bishop-Young has "turned skips into gold," by refurbishing small skips into little ponds, parks, skate ramps, and micro meeting areas (more details). On the more personal level, Michel de Broin created "Blue Monochrom," a dumpster hot tub.
Sex Galaxy (trailer 1, trailer 2, NSFW) is a new film that claims to be the first "green film," as it is made of 100% recycled material. In an Wired article, director/producer Mike Davis discloses his film sources. "Boarded-up libraries, abandoned schools, decaying drive-in movie theaters…. These are the realms in which I unearth my wares," he said. "And actually, many of these films are available on the internet. You can find amazing collections through the Library of Congress." The Wired article notes that the recycled material isn't itself wholly original, and Bad Lit expands the history of film plunder further. Sex Galaxy is sourced from Voyage to the Planet of Prehistoric Women, which relied on footage from Voyage to the Prehistoric Planet, which in turn is sampled from the Russian film Planeta Bur. The history of film reuse is long and storied, and continues after the jump. [more inside]
The Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP), a not-for-profit company sponsored by the UK government, urges you to cut down on waste paper this holiday season and wrap your presents with furoshiki, the traditional Japanese wrapping cloth. [more inside]
Joshua Allen Harris makes inflatable sculptures out of found trash bags: bear, creatures, monster. via wooster collective.
A Visual Guide To Recycling Plastics. Most recycling programs only accept plastics #1 and #2, so being able to quickly identify them can be a time saver when sorting your recycling. In the future, we should be able to recycle plastics #3 through #7 — but for now these outcasts must be banished to the landfill (that’s too bad, because a lot of stuff is made from plastic #5).
Book Scavenging. Hundreds of homeless people eke out a living scavenging books from dumpsters and sidewalk trash in Manhattan. Sidewalk is a book about the subculture of sidewalk book scavengers and vendors.
Superuse: Reusing can be beautiful, unusual, functional, and even illustrative of our culture of excess. (all links lead to the same site).
The SF Dump's Artist in Residence Program currently features Sudhu Tewari and Nome Edonna but will be welcoming Ellen Babcock and Nathaniel Tookey shortly. Its an idea that's been around for a little while. "Many artists find and recycle materials in their art, but no one else has this much material to pick from," says Program Director Paul Fresina. The 2,000-square-foot art studio is located at SF Recycling & Disposal, Inc.'s Solid Waste Transfer and Recycling Center. The 44-acre site is where most of San Francisco's garbage and recyclables are temporarily dumped before going to a landfill or recycling plant. Throughout a residency, each artist talks to young students and adult tour groups about the experience of turning trash into treasures. Previously and via.
Where do your recycleables go? Minneapolis' Star Tribune has created a very interesting, informative, interactive feature, describing where your recycling goes after it is picked up from your curb. An educational way to spend your afternoon!
Cardboard Geodesic Dome. A how-to on building a geodesic dome out of cardboard, a bit of wood, some duct tape and paint. Plus some rebar if you don't want the finished dome to fly like a kite. If you like the concept but not the size calculate your own then apply the concept.
Peace Art Project Cambodia --turning the detrius of war into art, in hopes of a more peaceful future. More info here, and here. "You can't help but think about what this machine has done to affect so many lives." And that is really the point. These sculptures are political art at its most powerful - relics of a violent past transformed into expressions of hope for a more peaceful future.
Freecycling. Reducing the amount of trash we generate by connecting people who have things that they no longer want with people who want those same things. The only rule: Every item posted must be free.