Seattle, WA– There is a saying that one person’s trash is another person’s treasure. In the case of two King County artists this is literally true. Thanks to a unique program offered by solid waste and recycling hauler, Recology CleanScapes, these artists are allowed access to the materials at the company’s south Seattle recycling facility in order to create art.
This creative outlet for artists is an extension of the award-winning Artist in Residence Program developed by Recology in San Francisco 25 years ago. The goal of the program is to support artists while teaching the importance of reducing, reusing and recycling. Artists work in a studio on site at Recology CleanScapes’ Seattle Materials Recovery Facility and scavenge discarded materials they can use to make works of art.
Two artists, Sarah Ruether and Karien Balluff, were awarded the residency after an application process that determined their work could showcase the value of discarded materials.
“I enjoy making use of items in unconventional ways and finding ways to give a second life to something no longer capable of fulfilling its intended purpose,” said Karien Balluff. “The Recology Artist in Residence program is such a creative way to re-purpose materials and show people these items can live longer than they would have otherwise.”
By supporting artists who work with recycled materials, Recology CleanScapes hopes to encourage people to conserve natural resources and promote new ways of thinking about art and the environment. During their residencies, artists have scavenging privileges and designated studio space to work at in the company’s facility. At the conclusion of the residency, Recology CleanScapes will host a public exhibition and reception for the artists to feature their work.
“Art enables me to see the world differently and it is exciting to watch something that was discarded be transformed,” said Sarah Ruether. “Turning materials that once had a utilitarian purpose into an object of beauty and interest is such a great way to encourage others to think differently about how they use resources.”
More information on Recology CleanScapes’ AIR program can be found at http://www.recologycleanscapes.com/about_us/air/