Artist turns trash into treasure

084d53cb-e2f4-4f31-a13a-320ae787d7bc

Editor's Picks
Features Post
The brightest pupils
04 October 2021
Features Post
Dealing with egg ‘fungus’
04 October 2021
Features Post
Rathbun’s tetra in the wild
13 September 2021
Fishkeeping News Post
Report: 2021 BKKS National Koi Show results
13 September 2021
Features Post
The World's forgotten fishes
16 August 2021


This piranha sculpture featured at a recent exhibition in Virginia, in the U.S. - and it's composed entirely from 'found items'.

Artist Noah Williams was inspired by his former job as a rubbish collector. He couldn't afford to buy the materials he needed for his paintings and decided he'd have a go at sculpting using junk — which was in plentiful supply and free. In his art he finds a use for items other people see as trash, such as car parts, chicken bones, feathers, the tops from jars — he says he sees potential in each piece of scrap metal and every abandoned tyre.

He finds a lot of the material he works with on construction sites, which he visits regularly as part of his job with Arlington County’s Transportation Department. He also has stuff donated by people. He told the Washington Post that he always asks permission before he takes anything — even if he finds it in a dumpster.

He begins each of his sculptures by making a wire skeleton, carefully 'sewing' the items he's found onto the frame using more wire.

And it's true that one man's trash is another man's treasure. This piece, called Amazon piranha, was on sale at his recent 'One Man's Trash' exhibition in Virginia for $2,400 (around £1,565).

Why not take out a subscription to Practical Fishkeeping magazine? See our latest subscription offer.

Don't forget that PFK is now available to download on the iPad.