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Phat Trash: the Art of Creative Renewal in the City Different

Bone Art, by Dan Phillips, founder of Phoenix Commotion

Floors made from wine corks?  Windows of crystal platters? In Huntsville, Texas, a community’s cast offs gain new life under the direction of Dan Phillips, founder of Phoenix Commotion, a company which crafts affordable housing out of durable discards from construction sites, roadside pickings and trash heaps. Read more about this visionary project in the New York Times piece, One Man’s Trash. Or watch this intro video from Going Green.

While homes with license plate roofs can’t happen in Santa Fe’s climate of historic preservation, there are plenty of ways the denizens of the City Different celebrate sustainability and creative recycling. We’re still a few weeks away from the Recycle Santa Fe Art Festival, but you can catch an artistic exultation of trash at the Santa Fe Community Convention Center, located in downtown Santa Fe, at 201 West Marcy Street from 10-5 PM, Monday-Saturday. The 2-and-3-D artworks of Waste/Not incorporate a minimum of 50% recycled materials. Featured pieces inspire reflection on issues related to the generation and management of trash, but check them out for their sheer beauty, wit and creative muscle.  New Mexican artists Michael Freed, Goldie Garcia, Geoffrey Gorman, Marion Martinez, Darlene Olivia McElroy, Joe “Buffalo” Nickels, Sallyann Paschall, Patricia Pearce, Bunny Tobias, Felicia Trujillo and Dee Ann Wagner are among the participants.

Sun/Flower/Seed, by Matthew Chase-Daniel

Starting tomorrow, the gallery-in-a-van that is itself a clever bit of recycling, Axle Contemporary , presents Moving Stills an exhibition of still photography from 18 New Mexico filmmakers and video artists. (Photo by participants Eve Andree Laramee below.) The show runs through October 27th, with an Opening Reception at the CCA next Friday, October 22nd.  Axle’s been busy with other intersections of environmental creativity with Matthew Chase-Daniel’s short run exhibit, Sun/Flower/Seed, pictured here, and last weekend’ s 10/10/10 Day of Climate Action, where Axle members taught participants how to roast their own charcoal and make yucca brushes.

As the aspens turn the Sangres de Cristo mountains to gold, and the fading perfume of roasting green chiles co-mingles with the fragrance from the season’s first pinon and juniper fires, Santa Fe heads for Winter with a sense-satisfying burst of creative energy.  From the burning of Zozobra at Fiestas forward, the spirit of Santa Fe in Fall is a contrarian refusal to go gentle into the night of Winter.  Creativity never stops in the City Different, but Fall hits a delightful high water mark of environmental consciousness and creative expression.

7 x 10" photo, by Eve Andree Laramee

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