RECYCLED, RE-SEEN: Folk Art from the Global Scrap Heap


Themes:
The All-American Art of Conspicuous Recycling

Recycling and the Aesthetics of Sound

Recycling in the Global Marketplace

Recycling for Fun and Profit

Recycling on the Body

Recycled Chic


"Trash,
like beauty,
is in the eye of the beholder."
--Michael Thompson,
Rubbish Theory
THIS EXHIBITION PAYS TRIBUTE TO THE CREATIVITY AND INGENUITY OF FOLK "RECYCLERS" FROM AFRICA TO ASIA TO THE AMERICAS. Though these artists live in widely dispersed places and diverse cultures, they all share one thing: they take throwaways and transform them into objects of renewed beauty, utility and meaning. They may not think of what they do as recycling, but each of them sees potential where others see only useless junk.

If trash is the raw material of this folk art, mass production is its driving force. Planned obsolescence spurs sales of products but their remains quickly wind up in the scrap heap. Disposable products may be convenient, yet they crowd the vast landfills that now threaten our environment.

Find out how and why people from around the world transform junk in different ways. Come in and take a global tour of creativity at work in the arts of recycling. You may never look at a bottle cap in quite the same way again!


Acknowledgements:
The Museum of International Folk Art wishes to gratefully acknowledge the support of the following generous funders.

Major support was provided by the
Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund which seeks to enhance the cultural communities and make the arts and culture an active part of everyday lives through support of programs in the performing, visual, literary and folk arts, adult literacy and urban parks.

Additional support was provided by
National Endowment for the Humanities, a federal agency
The Rockefeller Foundation
International Folk Art Foundation
Museum of New Mexico Foundation
Marshall L. and Perrine D. McCune Charitable Foundation
The Folk Art Committee and the Friends of Folk Art

We also express our thanks to the many donors and lenders who generously shared their collections with us.

Winner of the 9th Annual Exhibition Competition of the Curator's Committee of the American Association of Museums.

All photographs, unless otherwise noted, are by John Bigelow Taylor, New York City.