Art is everywhere and it comes in many forms. Many of us are probably most familiar with arts like paintings, sculpture, poetry, music, photography. There is one less familiar art form and it’s called “Junk Art”.
“Junk Art” a term coined in 1961 by British art critic and curator Lawrence Alloway to describe artworks made mainly from scrap materials, fabric swatches, broken-up machineries, and other “waste” materials.
Recently, I met one artist whose body of work belongs to the category of Junk Art, Benjie Jance. Ben or Benjie has been into this junk art hobby of re-creating, recycling, re-using waste materials to something useful at 8 years old. Growing older and with increasing, deepening awareness of the degradation of the environment due to trash, his simple hobby has now become a serious advocacy it is today.
Benjie founded TWIST (Transforming Waste Into Special Things), a non-profit organization that aims to help people make use of the trash around them and turn these into profitable businesses, and along with it helping the environment breathe better with less plastic trash.
TWIST thru Benjie have conducted hands-on workshops for Tahanan Walang Hagdanan community, several schools like Assumption in Antipolo, and in various sitios and barangays. He hails from Bacolod City and from time to time conduct workshops also in the City of Smiles. If you want to have your own Junk Art workshop for your community, please reach out to Benjie. Kindly find his contact details at the end of this article.
Benjie’s aim is to help others in his own little way, at the same time assist our government educate Filipinos in minimizing the proliferation of plastic waste into our streets, esteros, our environment.
Benjie is a Mechanical Engineer by profession; though his world revolves around constructions and engineering, he makes sure to still have time to nourish his creative side, and at the same time push for his advocacy in reducing waste by recycling and creation of junk art.
These are just a few of his creations made entirely out of either/or/mix of indigenous materials, glass, scrap metals, plastic related junk materials.
His junk art works ranges from simple to complex plastic bottle flower making, cosplay and Halloween costumes, decorative and Christmas figures such as Christmas wreaths, life size Dog named Simeon (junk yard dog) all created from simple waste materials that we see around us.
Now (not really related to the topic, but I want to insert this tidbit just because who doesn’t love dogs? 😀), if you love dogs or is a dog parent yourself, you have that in common with Benjie and his family of 3. Their small family takes care of five dearly love pets (4 shih-tzu’s and a golden retriever), with interesting names Twilight (Blue Shih Tzu), Extra (tri-color Shih-Tzu), the family named him extra since he has this extra toe on both of his hind legs, Emperor (tri-color Shih-Tzu), Tootsie (white ShiTzu) and Precious (Golden Retriever). I could just imagine Benjie working and Twilight or Emperor make a dash for the colorful plastics hehe.
Unleash your creative side, create your own junk art. Let’s all save the ‘waste’ we can recycle / reinvent and let’s produce amazing works of art.
Featured Artist: Benjie Jance, Eco Warrior and Junk Artist for JanceEco / TWISTEmail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mobile No: 09206341579
Facebook page: Benjie Jance JanceArt
This article is part of Penfires feature series on Artists and Advocacies.