I love collecting art to add life to the walls of my home. I was so excited to return home this holiday season after a visit to Asheville, N.C., where I was finally able to purchase my first Michael Banks piece – an artist that I’ve been admiring forever. Every artist has their own unique way of expressing their visions, but when an artist finds a way to use recycled materials in that expression, it makes my heart sing. The Banks’ piece that now hangs in my living room, titled “He Like,” was painted an old kitchen cabinet door.
Every time I look at the piece I wonder whose house this door came from? What was stored behind the door in the home? The story that I’ve concocted is that it was a cabinet that hung high in a family’s kitchen with two young children. And behind the door was the cookie jar, that when no one was looking, a young boy and girl climbed up onto the countertop to sneak a treat. I believe that Banks must have felt the adventurous spirit of those kids when he initially looked at the old cabinet door and decided to bring their mischief back to life through his painting. I hope to one day meet him to discuss my theory.
There are so many artists out there using household items like reclaimed cabinets, doors, windows and more as the backdrop for their art. That got me thinking, where can homeowners who have discarded items, after a remodel for example, donate their items so that artists can turn trash into treasure? I found a list that can help some people locate organizations seeking to provide creators with donated items (scroll down to see organizations “Outside the Bay Area” for everyone who’s located outside of San Francisco).
So far I’ve been unsuccessful in locating any organization in my hometown like the ones on this list, but I do know that any Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore accepts gently used items such as furniture, home accessories, building materials, and appliances. Thanks to artists like Banks, our trash might end up in museums instead of the landfill. And if it doesn’t make it to a donation center, watch out cuz Molly Evans might LionelStichie it.