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Plastic Africa

Posted: Sep 27 2012

September 27, 2012

It is phenomenal how inventive the mind gets in certain circumstances. In Africa, there is no such thing as scrap. Every piece of telephone wire, metal, plastic bag, jerry can (you get the picture) is repurposed or converted into something else. Village children build their own cars from found objects and toys are made from recycled telephone wire, old bottle caps and metal pieces. Old tin boxes become storage and even art is many times made of recycling; the flotsam and jetsam. 

Consider El Anatsui's bottle cap shimmering sheets of kente cloth and the Beninoise artist, Romuald Hazoume's jerry cans sculpted into masks of terror. The end result is that we "reduce the environmental impact of consumerism by extending the life-time of materials." (Laura Hoeber:

A good thing. 




 Toy from Ikhaya Modern Africa Home






Toy car made of recycled tonic can, bottle tops and wire via google

Plastic African Kettle via google

Romuald Hazoume: Benin via google

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