Friday, January 18, 2008

Art From Migrant's Trash

I enjoyed this article from the first page of yesterday's Wall Street Journal.

Article title: Desert Castaways Get Second Life In Art Exhibition
Ms. James Finds Material In Items Left by Immigrants;
Cactus Needles in a Mitten

Published in: The Wall Street Journal
Date: January 17, 2008; Page A1

Artist Valerie James collects interesting (to her) trash left behind by migrant workers. She has two exhibits. One is a display in a building she owns. The other one consists of assemblages in an art exhibit in Tucson Arizona isn’t doing so well:

“Many people react strongly -- and not all positively -- to the assemblage of "junk" art. Gallery owner Randy Ford says the exhibit hasn't been as well attended as he had expected. He believes area residents are tired of the immigration issue.”

My reaction to that is that I think the show would be of more interest in places not near the border. I think the show would be of interest in New York City, for example. I would attend this exhibit if it were near me.

I am interested in trying to construct the story behind some of the left behind items. That is just how my mind works.

And I really like the idea of making art from trash. In my own art explorations I have challenged myself to do things such as use only junk mail or recycled items in order to try to give new life and meaning to something that was destined for the trash or for the recycling bin.

1 comment:

AllColors said...


I came across your blog while reading the Wall Street Journal online. I too enjoyed reading the story on "Art From Migrant's Trash." I work with immigrants in the educational arena - specifically at-risk and high-risk youth and their parents.

Interested in learning about artist trading cards! Keep up the great work!