With Earth Day coming up later this month, it’s time for the Art of Trash, that special event where artists challenge themselves to make something beautiful from garbage otherwise destined to live out its days (years or millenia) decomposing in our landfills. It’s a time when “sitting on trash” can conjure images unsuspected, like a chair in a grass skirt.
The chair in this case is Lisa Burke’s “Funny Kine Chair,” and it’s the winner of this year’s Chair-ish Maui Recycled Art Contest, which was held April 7 at Makawao Union Church. Complete with accompanying Aloha print seat, plumeria lei and coconut bra strewn over its back, the chair was constructed from an old, discarded folding metal chair once used by the church. It’s been resurrected, given a second life, as it were, and is now destined to sit on display at the Art of Trash exhibit in the Maui Mall from April 19 to May 10. With it will be the second place winner “The Grey Havens,” by Amy Mathis and Barbara LaMarca’s third place winner “Izzy.”
“Transforming a rusty folding chair into one that conveys a vision or gives us a laugh, diverts it from the landfill for a few more years thanks to some very creative Chair-ish Maui participants,” said Wilma Nakamura, Chair-ish judge and coordinator of Art of Trash, in an April 7 statement. “The artists saw more than a chair. They saw a canvas, an opportunity for an homage to hula and even Jackson Pollock!”
Entrants in the Chair-ish Maui Recycled Art competition were given an old, rusty, metal folding chair and instructed to decorate it using any materials. There was only one requirement: the completed chair had to fold and unfold. The contest ran from January through March 31 and received nine entrants.
Prizes were donated by Polli’s Mexican Restaurant, Kula Botanical Gardens, Maui EKO Compost, the County of Maui Department of Environmental Management and Bag of Joy.
Visit Facebook.com/artoftrash for more information about the upcoming Art of Trash art and fashion show.