Can you collect?

container lids and found street sweeper bristles

plastic yoghurt and metal sauce lids saved from recycling, and street-sweeper bristles/blades arranged on a white background
plastic yoghurt and metal sauce lids saved from recycling, and street-sweeper bristles/blades found on the streets of Perth

Perth + Melbourne, can you help?

I’m working towards a new work and I’m on the hunt for two specific recycled materials:

  1. plastic or metal container lids that are 50mm diameter or bigger. Ideally red and white, but other colours also welcomed. The larger vitamin jars are great for white, as are yoghurt containers, while all sorts of paste, sauce, butters and and jam jar lids come in red and white. Only one side has to be the full colour; printed containers are good too.
  2. Steel street sweeper bristles (or street sweeper blades). These fall off street sweeper trucks and collect on the sides of roads, mostly in city areas. Literally every time I’m walking in a city I find them on the street and in the gutters, round-about medians and even on the footpath. Rusty is fine!

all as pictured above.

I’m seeking hundreds of both lids and bristles, so it would mean a HUGE amount to me if you were to keep your eyes peeled and pick up either of these items and hold onto them for me.

Perth: Save ’em up if you can, and I’ll come take a collection off your hands right up until the end of May. DM, email ( ) or text me. And if you have a stash already, please let me know!

Melbourne: I’m in town from the 15th – 20th hanging out at the Exhibition Centre for Melbourne Design Festival so you can seek me out and drop them off to me there. I will be so grateful! I will also be stalking the streets and lanes of Melbs while I’m in town, so if you wanna join the fun, get in touch!

The project that will used them is going to be big and ostensibly wearable – but more likely to be displayed on a wall. And colourful! So know that your cast-offs and street finds will be used – upcycled – to their fullest capacity. Please, please keep a look out and to get in touch when you have a collection that I can arrange to pick up from you.

But how prevalent are sweeper bristles? Is this like seeking a needle in a haystack?

I hear you ask!

Well! Over here is an earlier piece I made in 2021 from a collection picked up from strolls around Northbridge. And just yesterday, Bruce and I walked for an hour around Perth (Kings Park Road and Harvest Tce by the Parliament building, got brunch and then dawdled back to base via some very profitable side-streets – IYKYK) and found over 50 in a one-hour walk. Other anecdotal evidence suggests that hot-spots are busy tree-lined streets, where there’s traffic and/or where a lot of workers congregate. Of course I don’t expect anyone to be on a mission to attain these strange pieces of kerb-side pollution, but if you’re walking around and happen to spot a couple, I’ll happily take them off your hands!

And for those not in Perth or Melbourne – if you can drop 10 or more bristles into the mail via a padded pouch I’ll happily reimburse you express postage – please get in touch and we’ll exchange details 😉

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