Making Art from Unconventional Objects

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Did you know that you can create art out of things you find in your desk drawers?

Take a close look at the photo above, which shows three artworks by Eric Daigh, on display at Grand Central Station in New York City. You’d never guess that the monumental portrait on the left was actually created from push pins, or that the large mural on the right was created from a variety of colorful Post-It notes.

Contemporary artists are constantly stretching the boundaries of art by using unconventional materials to craft their artwork. Way back when, “true art” consisted of things like realistic oil paintings and finely carved marble statues. These days, even things you find in your kitchen, office or trash bin can be turned into respectable art.

Perhaps it started in 1917 with Marcel Duchamp’s submission of a urinal that he signed “R. Mutt” to an art show in which purportedly “all submissions” would be accepted. In the end, the urinal was not placed on display, but Duchamp’s impish act revolutionized the art world.

Thanks to YouTube and various social-networking websites, unorthodox works of art are now reaching a wide, and very appreciative, audience. Artists who create portraits of Elvis out of Cheetos or detailed architectural renderings on an Etch-a-Sketch are now celebrated as innovative and amusing contributors to our contemporary pop culture.

Next time you sift through your junk drawer or finish a bag of chips, think about how those everyday things could be turned into a work of art!

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