Found Objects and Landfillart

Using found objects to create works of art is part of a fascinating tradition in modern art.  (See our article on using found objects in recycling here)

Originally coming from the French term objet trouvé, a found object describes art created from undisguised, but often modified, objects or products, not normally considered art.

It is generally accepted that Marcel Duchamp perfected the concept when he made a series of ready-mades — completely unaltered everyday objects selected by him and designated as art.

A large number of artists in the Landfillart project have incorporated found objects to make statements about re-cycling.  Some of the especially interesting examples in the Landfillart Collection include:

Wheels of Change

by Lisa J Levasseur


I think there is so much value often lost between the generations that art can play an important role in communication of these things. I am moved by the actions, history and events that shape mankind. My inspiration can come from the simplest of things, like the craftsmanship of a discarded old hubcap. I created Palette Art because I couldn’t bear to throw away the dried up paint on my palettes and found a way to turn it into art instead. I’m honored to participate in a project with such tremendous social value.” Lisa J Levasseur

Valmont, British Columbia.  Lisa has quickly emerged as an artist in less than two years with no formal art education or background painting. She is known for her incredible range of work and raw natural talent with different mediums. Featured in exhibitions in New York and Palm Desert as the creator of an innovative technique using 100% acrylic paint and unique type of abstract work called Palette Art.

Her website is at www.paletteart.org


Shiny But Cracked Landscape

by David Benforado

BenforadoDavid-500I like the idea of working with discarded materials. It was a challenge to work on a restricted size and surface such as the hubcap. My concept was to come up with a theme which reflects our impact on nature. The car industry and the carbon emissions greatly add to the pollution of the environment. In addition, I am very pleased to take part on this global initiative of collecting metal canvasses and doing something creative with them.” David Benforado

Syros, Greece.  David studied painting at the Hungarian University of Fine Arts, received a BFA from Brandeis University, and had an internship at the Guggenheim Museum, Venice. He is an internationally exhibiting artist who has had several solo and group exhibitions and publications.

His website is at www.davidbenforado.com

No Bees – No Humans

Erika Wain

WainErika-500The purpose [of this piece] is to bring home an awareness of the fragility of the human’s existence, dependent on a tiny creature that most shun, run away from, swat at, and in general are fearful of – the Bee. She is indeed  a friendly ‘foe’ worthy of adoration and appreciation, for without her, humanity will not survive.” Erika Wain

A Canadian born artist now working in Los Angeles, California, Erica is both an artist on canvas and multimedia artist. She is a graduate of UCLA with a of arts degree. She has traveled Europe, Egypt, Greece and North Africa, setting in California. Erika is also a beekeeper who lost 80% of her bees in 2007 and 50% of her bees in 2008, due to colony collapse disorder, a virus that has spread all over the world. Erika’s art has been exhibited in France, Germany, New York City, Korea, California, Italy, Greece and Japan.

Hopes And Fears

by Dale Copeland


Puniho, New Zealand

The re-use of the discarded is the hub of my assemblage artwork. The French call it ‘bricolage’ – the philosophy of the found. Careful constructions of treasured objects, joy in jetsam, philosophy in flotsam.”    Dale Copeland

Dale is an internationally exhibiting artist. She has worked in collage, jewelry, book-making, photography, fabric art and sculpture, but her favored medium is assemblage, or box art:
 careful constructions of treasured objects. Dale’s work has been published in L’Art du Collage dans tous ses états by Pierre Jean Varet, Editions Artcolle, Paris, and Artist’s Magazine, US.


The Vanity Circle

by Carmel Bonello

BonelloCarmel-500.jpg.pagespeed.ic.H9RPsaG-y4The concept behind creating a work of art about this theme is the use of scrap or refuse material to create the work. I wanted to create something related to Vanity and faces as I had some extra old costume jewelry to give away. I created the faces on the hub cap as I use a lot of faces in my style and combined the hubcap with the jewellery to create this work of art.” Carmel Bonello

Mellieha, Malta.   Carmel was born in Siggiewi in 1960 and studied art at the School of Arts and has a diploma in fine arts. The artist feels his art is inclined in the expressive movements. Carmel tries to experiment in different medias in most of his paintings and drawings. The artist had several solo exhibitions in Malta and abroad. Many of his works are to be found in Malta and different countries around the world especially in France, Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.



The Wheel of Fortune

Upcoming posts on the Landfill Art Project blog will focus on different aspects of the LandfillArt collection — themes that were repeated in different ways by different artists, unusual techniques and media used, stories told by the artists, concerns about the environment,

So it seems appropriate to begin our exploration of the collection with the Idea of the Wheel of Fortune – the role that chance, fate, and luck plays in our lives

The concept of the Wheel of Fortune, or Rota Fortunae goes back to ancient and medieval philosophy, referring to the capricious nature of Fate. The wheel belongs to the goddess Fortuna, who spins it at random, changing the positions of those on the wheel – some suffer great misfortune, others gain windfalls. Fortune appears on all paintings as a woman, sometimes blindfolded, “puppeteering” a wheel.

The artists chose different ways to portray their thoughts about Rota Fortunae


The Wheel Of Fortune

by Nives Cicin-Sain


Nives Cicin-Sain from Split, Croatia created her own version of The Wheel of Fortune.  Nives has had 20 solo exhibitions and has taken part in over 50 group exhibitions throughout the world.  She graduated from the Art School in 1979, and became a member of the Croatian Association of Independent Artists in 1989.

In her artistic expressions she mostly uses a papier-mâché technique which she perfected herself, and as a result she has held many workshops at home, in Japan, Germany, USA and Israel. Until 1999, she participated in numerous theatre projects, modeling art props, masks and jewelry. Nives also created three independent scene set designs and three costume design projects. She has experience with illustration of books and design of picture postcards. During 2007, she published a book My Papier-Mâché in Croatian that was also translated into English and German.

see her website at  http://www.nivescicinsain.com/


The Wheel Of Fortune

by Chloe Paganini And Sébastian Aurillon


Chloe is a French artist who graduated from the Ecole des Beaux-arts in Paris. She has been living in NYC for two and a half years. Sebastien is a Parisian painter who lives and works in NYC as an art consultant for galleries and artists. Both artists work together under the name Miss Chloe and Mister Sebastien.

Can accessories be used to show a glimpse of one’s style, one’s social status, one’s fortune. The words ‘Wheel’ and ‘Fortune’ came to us and we decided to take a play on them.”

website at   http://chloepaganini.com/



The Wheel Of Fortune

by Donalee Pond-Koenig



From the fame ‘Wheel of Fortune’ my idea grew. I have saved our fortunes from the cookies for years and had always planned to use them in some form of art project. So here it is in a hubcap circle-perfect!”    Donalee Pond-Koenig

Donalee, from Tallahassee, Florida,  has a BFA in fine arts from Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, New York. She has a professional art studio and is on the Board of Directors for two well known art galleries. Donalee has taught as an adjunct professor at Florida State University and Tallahassee Community College.

Her website is at :  http://donaleepondkoenig.com/home.html


The Wheel Of Fortunes

by Rhonda Williams-Parent



Rhonda currently lives in Woodinville, Washington but was born in northern Ontario in Canada. She has enjoyed creating art her whole life but assemblage artwork has just recently become part of her creative expression. Rhonda shows and teaches art in the Seattle, Washington area.

The concept of reusing materials in the creation of art is not only brilliant but it is irreplaceable! The patina that use imparts on materials makes every piece of art incredibly unique.” Rhonda Williams-Parent


The Wheel Of Fortune

by Karen Landey


Living in Beaverton, Oregon, video artist and indie video producer, Karen Landey has produced nine issues of Indie Arts: The DVD Magazin.  The cutting edge DVD format features videotaped interviews with mixed media and collage artists and offers ideas for independent artists to take their art to the next level and ways to get their artwork seen.

I was intrigued by the concept of turning trash into art. I loved the challenge of finding the treasure in the shape and material. The Wheel of Fortune was the perfect solution, using more trash to make this treasure.” Karen Landey

Her website is at  http://karenlandey.com/  and the DVD magazine is at  http://indieartsdvd.com/


The Wheel Keeps Turning

by Rita Klackin


The idea of art being part of the solution to the problem of the destruction of the natural environment is logical. Creation and destruction go hand in hand. Bringing creation out of destruction gives us all hope…and an opportunity for rebirth.” Rita Klackin

Rita is an artist and art therapist working in Livingston, New Jersey . She works with Alzheimers/Dementia patients, medically ill children, and those struggling with mental illness. Rita works in several mediums such as painting, printmaking, drawing and photography.


Medicine Wheel(Clarifying Our Focus)

by Shan Goshorn



Shan Goshorn is an Eastern Band Cherokee, living in Tulsa, Oklahoma.  Specializing in hand-colored black and white photos and large scale abstract paintings, her work has been exhibited extensively in the United States and Canada and is included in exhibits world wide. Shan’s art is included in collections in the National Museum of the American Indian, The Smithsonian Institute and the Department of the Interior. Shan serves on many boards relating to Native American art and contemporary Indian issues.

I believe in the power of intention; art is one way to heal. I am grateful to be part of this global movement by artists to bring awareness and health to our world.”   Shan Goshorn

 Her website is at   http://www.shangoshorn.net/



Artists from South America

For this post, we wanted to highlight some of the South American artists that participated in the project.


by Jose Luis De La Barra Bellido


Born in Chosica Lima, Peru, Jose attended the Fine Arts Autonomous Superior School in Lima, Peru, where he studied painting, illustration, and murals. He is an award winning internationally showing artist. He has created a dream-like world through his expressing the internal and external fantasies of his imagination with his precise talents in painting and drawing. The expressions and the sensual movements that appear in each piece, create mystic allegories about the universe. By combining his interest in the human forms with his desire for symbolic content, he has engendered a language that explains the human condition through a unique perspective.

I like new projects and the artist and future vision is very interesting.”  Jose Luis De La Barra Bellido


Untitled   by Maria Parmo


Parmo_Maria-500Now working in Cordoba, Argentina, Maria realized art was her passion in 1983. In 1991, she entered the Art School of Cordoba University and received a B.A degree in 1997 (U.N.C.). Maria has participated in exhibitions nationally and internationally. Her artworks are in private collections in Argentina, Colombia, Costa Rica, Paraguay, United States, Spain, Germany, Republic of Ireland and Serbia.

“I love to paint – but it is so much more meaningful when we utilize a degree of consciousness and paint for the health of our planet.” Maria Parmo


The Alien Orifice   by Gute Brandao


Now living in Arlington, Virginia, Gute was born in Belo-Horizonte, Brazil. He started out working as a trained weaver working with natural fibers, and then moved on to painting and drawing using natural pigments. He is a self taught artist with works represented in New York City, Baltimore, Chicago, and Richmond.

I decided to participate in this project because I found extremely important meanings and ideas of use of discarded materials, which can be very dangerous to our fragile environment. It was also, a challenge for me, I always used paper as my main support for my drawings and working on this material was very interesting, so, I guess that I did not chose to be involved on this project, instead I was chosen by it due to the message and idea of preserving the nature as well as the unconventional use of the materials chosen by the artists.”  Gute Brandao


Untitled   by Fernando Salomone


 Fernando began drawing and painting as a child in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He now lives in New York City and Pennsylvania, working in Manhattan and painting in his studio in Pennsylvania. Fernando brings his rich and varied background to the art of interior decoration. Fernando received his fine arts training at the Escuela de Bellas Artes de Buenos Aires.

His website is at:     www.fernandosalomone.com




Evolución de la Rueda (Evolution of the Wheel)

by Fernando Correa


Edo Aragua, Venezuela

Fernando discovered the way to best express himself as a child was through art. After completing primary school and secondary studies, Fernando studied at the School of Visual Arts in Venezuela. He studied such subjects as theater, television, set design, body expression, voice, diction and dance to enhance his artistic skills, referring to his studies as “artistic research.” He worked for many years in the Directorate of Culture of Aragua with a touring children’s theater group. Apart from showing and selling his artwork since 1969, Fernando teaches “art therapy,” creating an atmosphere of hope for all those who wish to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Fernando has received numerous awards and his work is collected in Spain, the United States, France, Italy, Belgium and Portugal.

His website is at:    www.artefernandocorrea.com

My reason for participating in the Landfillart project was born of natural intuition. I felt much honesty and integrity from the organization’s founder, Ken Marquis, and felt my art would serve as a means of communication between us. I would like to contribute more, but for now, I have sent you my creative effort.”   Fernando Correa