The Art of Upcycling

10 Amazing Cardboard Sculptures by Mark Langan

Edvard Munch's "The Scream"
Mark Langan is an Ohio artist who has mastered the art of upcycling. For about five years, his focus has been giving used corrugated cardboard a new life as sculpture. His materials are about as simple (and green) as it gets: corrugated boxes, non-toxic glue, a razor knife, a cutting edge and mat.
While he acknowledges that he isn't making a dent in the waste stream, he hopes to inspire people to recycle, and we heartily agree with his assessment that, "It is something rather than nothing." We might add, it is something extraordinary.
The Daily Green is featuring his work, simply, because we think it's really cool. He often works on commission (as you can see from the company logos he's created) and you can see more or contact him
Pictured here is his interpretation of Edvard Munch's famous, "The Scream." (larger size)
Photo Credit: Mark Langan
DK Trucking -- Before
Mark Langan was commissioned to create a Diamond K Trucking logo that recognizes the Scranton, Pa., parent company's business: waste paper recycling. He started with a few images supplied by employees, and sketched this design for transformation...
Photo Credit: Mark Langan
Diamond K Trucking -- After
The employees of Diamond K Trucking presented this piece of upcycled art to the company's owner, David Kirtland. As artist Mark Langan said, "The tractor and trailer are three dimensional and appear to leap off the art. This one was quite the challenge for me but the results came out great. It now is proudly displayed in their place of business is Scranton, Pa." (Larger size.)
Photo Credit: Mark Langan
Green Dream
Mark Langan created this piece for the Beachwood High School The Green Dreamevent. It's made of Girl Scout cookie boxes! (Larger size.)
"Last April, the students held am Eco-Friendly event that was the first and largest of its kind for Ohio," Langan said. "It drew in a huge crowd and with the sponsorship raised funds needed to construct the nation's first LEED certified classroom. I will be participating again this year and will bring some of my new creations to show."
Photo Credit: Mark Langan
Newport CH International LLC
Mark Langan created this three-dimensional logo (larger size) for Newport CH International LLC, an international trading company focused on the purchasing and direct export sale of wastepaper for the recycling industry. Says Langan: "I rendered their logo three dimensionally having it 'erupt' from a cracked earth-effect background. The background is basically just shredded corrugated (my scraps) that I add a non-toxic glue mix forming a sculpting compound."
Photo Credit: Mark Langan
Piet Mondrian?
Mark Langan created this piece (larger size) as part of a triptych for the boardroom of Mid-States Packaging of Lewsistown, Ohio, a company that makes honeycomb cardboard packaging and related products. "I picked up a whole bunch of scrap from their warehouse and returned home with it," Langan explained. "I utilized as many facets as possible in the medium and created this unique artwork for them. I based this particular segment of the art on Piet Mondrian."
Photo Credit: Mark Langan
Where Waste Makes Haste
Langan displays this piece (larger size) at shows, as an example of his work (and humor).
Photo Credit: Mark Langan
Star of David
Mark Langan created this stylized Star of David (larger size) for the Cohen family of Beachwood, Ohio, who presented it to their son, David, as a Bar Mitzvah gift. "The theme for this event is recycling based on 'Bal Tashchit'," Langan explained, "and the artwork is a stylized abstract Star of David made completely from recycled corrugated boxes. I incorporated David's invites (also recycled) into the art as well to personalize it for him."
Photo Credit: Mark Langan
Bar Code
Created for the Illinois Recycling Association's 2007 conference in Springfield, Ohio, this sculpture (larger size) will be immediately recognizable to anyone who's been through a grocery store checkout. "The UBC is so abstract," Langan said, "I couldn't wait to create this art by mimicking the design."
Photo Credit: Mark Langan
Cardboard Uncle Sam
Langan's work is summed up nicely by this sculpture, of a classic Uncle Sam (larger size). "This is an artwork that I constructed entirely from recycled corrugated boxes," Langan said. "It is a three dimensional depiction of Uncle Sam from the old Army recruitment posters." With a slightly different message.
Photo Credit: Mark Langan


Lindsey Stipes said…
those are really neat!1 now following your friday blog hop!!
Very cool!

I'm a new follower from the Bee Friendly Friday Follow. I'd love it if you'd visit A Helicopter Mom and follow me back!

I'm also having my FIRST giveaway of a Limited Edition Fine Art Print. It has very low entries, so I'd really appreciate it if you'd drop by and enter.

Have a great weekend! Thanks. :)

Popular Posts