Everyday Art: Garbage Cans
Everyday objects can have a place in the world of art. They don’t have to be totally boring, utilitarian objects. They can become something to make you smile or inspire you or make you think. Even the lowly garbage can is able to be changed into something more than a boring trash receptacle.
Garbage cans seem to be everywhere you look. They can range from small plastic containers to huge metal bins. They are usually completely utilitarian having a completely ordinary, no nonsense appearance. They line driveways, back alleys, and are scattered through parks and malls. When I think of a garbage can, I usually picture the standard steel drum sort of can that Oscar the Grouch from Sesame Street used to live in.
I started to wonder, what if these everyday objects added something to the world. What if they could make someone smile or wonder or laugh or even just appreciate it? Even the simplest thing can be beautified, painted or sculpted. Here’s a look at some of what I found.
This garbage bin is in a town that decorates all of their bins apparently. I like the big googly bloodshot eyes and toothy grin. Reminds me of Halloween in a friendly, garbage eating kind of way.
This garbage can reminds me of Halloween too but in a killer, psycho clown kind of way. Yikes! At least the kids in the midway will notice the garbage can and hopefully, put their garbage into it. I might be a little afraid of it biting off my hand though…
This one’s a little more unique. It’s a oval chrome garbage can that is reflecting the brick wall around it. I’m not sure if this reflection is a result of a neat camera angle or if it just looks like that. Pretty neat trick of the eye though.
Okay, maybe this one can’t actually be used for garbage anymore but I thought it was definitely worth showing. I think this one took 3rd place in a garbage can art competition — who knew there was such a thing!
Here’s some really cool graffiti that involves a garbage can as being the horse for the guy on the wall. Ingenious use of found art, I just hope that nobody moves the can and wrecks the effect!
This picture was taken at a festival in Florida. I love how they’ve painted the same sort of plants on the can that are growing around it. Once the plants get bigger, it’ll blend right in. Sort of like garbage camouflage.
Here’s another sneaky garbage from the same town as the last one. It totally blends into the parking lot! It’s hard to notice the two openings on either side of where it says “Town Of”. I wonder what other kinds of object art they have there? They do have a ton of these undercover ninja garbage cans though. Interesting place to visit, I’m sure!
This one blends into nature with the branches surrounding it. It’s a shot from the Bronx Zoo. I love the beautiful lighting of this picture!
Here’s a street art garbage can in Buenos Aries, Argentina. Quirky to say the least! I love how the legs look hairy. Would definitely make people stop and look, for sure.
This one is definitely the most elaborate garbage can I could find. What appears to be a beautiful statue in China serves double duty as a garbage can on closer inspection. What a beautiful multipurpose artful garbage can.
So next time you go to use something ordinary and mundane, stop to think what it could be. With a little imagination our world could become so much more interesting. If only everyday objects could be looked at as pieces of art in the making…