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 Introduction 25 March 2000 - 8 September2002

The exhibition 'Transformations: The Art of Recycling' is a celebration of human creativity through recycling and re-use. With exhibits ranging from Australian spearheads made from bottle glass through to a chair made from a traffic bollard, Transformations shows how people have recycled in different cultures throughout history.

The exhibition includes objects from the Pitt Rivers Museum's worldwide collections alongside works by contemporary British artists, makers and designers. Please click on the pictures for enlargements and captions.

A focus of the exhibition is inventive problem-solving through recycling and reuse. Many of the exhibits show how a bit of imagination can transform an object made for one purpose for a completely different use. A good example of this is a movie-film canister which was turned into a cooking sieve by Asif Pasha in Bangalore, India. With its dappled perforations, the sieve is visually appealing, comfortable to hold and appears to work well for straining. It makes efficient and creative use of an available inexpensive resource.

Patchwork and other familiar techniques are explored in Transformations as well as more unusual forms of recycling. These include a Victorian English basket made from folded newspapers which has been plaited using a straw hat-making technique. A contemporary innovative example of a recycling technique can be seen in the delicately patterned bags made from woven and heat-treated supermarket carrier bags by Sharon Porteous.

The Transformations exhibition is not intended to promote an ecological message but aims to show how people around the world have recycled for practical and creative reasons. The exhibition is arranged in three main thematic sections. For further details choose the 'virtual exhibition' option on the menu above.

As well as Transformations - The Art of Recycling in the special exhibition gallery at the Pitt Rivers Museum you might like to visit the following linked displays:

• An artist's intervention by Joachim Schmid has been installed in the 'permanent' Museum galleries.

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Date Last Modified: 20/3/01