FROM RAGS TO RICHES

MEET FOUR MAK­ERS WHO USE WHAT OTH­ERS CAST ASIDE TO CRE­ATE IN­TRI­CATE AND IN­TRIGU­ING WORKS OF ART

The Simple Things - - IDEAS - Words: FRANCES AM­BLER

The av­er­age house­hold in the UK pro­duces more than a tonne of waste every year – which adds up to a sober­ing 31 mil­lion tonnes an­nu­ally. While cam­paign­ers are try­ing to tackle this in a va­ri­ety of ways, one cre­ative ap­proach is to see waste as a ma­te­rial for art. The four Bri­tish mak­ers fea­tured here look to our rub­bish for in­spi­ra­tion, en­cour­ag­ing the viewer to see waste denim, metal, plas­tic and pa­per in a whole new light.

Denim:Ian Berry

It’s hard to imag­ine an item of cloth­ing more uni­ver­sal than a pair of jeans. Denim is a ma­te­rial that we all know and feel com­fort­able with. For Hud­der­s­field artist Ian Berry, how­ever, it forms his palette, from which he con­structs in­tri­cate images. Be­gin­ning with his sim­ple ob­ser­va­tion of the var­ied shades of blue in a pile of jeans, he has used old denim to cre­ate melan­choly ur­ban images, tra­di­tional pub scenes and in­stantly recog­nis­able por­traits from his lay­ers of cut and con­structed denim. Jeans are so fa­mil­iar we’re used to tak­ing the way they look for granted – Ian’s work en­cour­ages us to look again. ian­berry.org

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