Turning trash into treasures (and even into homes).

April 28, 2010 at 1:27 pm 1 comment

Isaiah Zagar is a visual artist in Philadelphia who best known for building the Philadelphia Magic Gardens. The beautiful 14-year project consists of  “a fully mosaiced indoor gallery and a massive outdoor labyrinthine mosaic sculpture,” and they are made with an impressive range of recycled materials.

outdoors at the Philadelphia Magic Gardens

Farther south, another inspiring man named Dan Phillips has created a very unique home building organization in Huntsville, TX. Phoenix Commotion creates incredibly unique low-income houses with apprentice-based crews and a variety of donated and found materials, which include “mismatched bricks, shards of ceramic tiles, shattered mirrors, bottle butts, wine corks, old DVDs and even bones from nearby cattle yards.”

inside a Phoenix Commotion home in Huntsville, TX

In 1989, another admirably innovative Texan named Vince Hannemann started building what is now known as the multi-leveled, visitor-packed Cathedral of Junk. Unfortunately this fantasy space of recycled materials is currently under fire from the City of Austin because of building code violations. You can read more about its potential demolition in GOOD.

a sign for Austin’s notorious Cathedral of Junk

April 28’s daily design idea is using recycled consumer goods as building materials honors sustainability and celebrates individuality. Try looking in your closest trash can or recycling bin and imagining what kind of environment you could design with those materials.


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Bingo: Organic Design The war on bad infographics.

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. freakcycle  |  April 28, 2010 at 4:02 pm

    I love this stuff. Think I may have seen Dan Phillips’ stuff in an article written about him in the Ny Times. Pretty sure as I remember that roof made out of frames.


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