When reusing discarded household items becomes art — Dhriti Gandhi Ranjan

The Week, 03.21.2018

There are plenty of things in our house that we discard after daily use. Ever wondered how these products can be transformed into pieces of art? Manish Nai knows it. He passionately collects discarded materials from daily life and reuses them to make sculptures.

“So far, I have worked with clothes, newspapers and cardboards because my father was a trader. Since the material was easily available, I used the material in paintings. But later, I developed an interest in making sculptures. Thereon, I thought about innovating harder materials. It was the urge that made me experiment with aluminium sheets,” he says.

At the India Art Fair 2018, Nai is showcasing this skill in the form of two wonderful pieces of art. One of them was created using 26kg aluminium sheet; the other one was made using old and discarded clothes. Nai says creating the sculpture from aluminium sheet wasn’t easy as there were several layers involved in the process.

“It was labour intensive. The process involved compressing the sheets into flat surfaces. The sheets have been created by using hammer and heat. I then created a dye, mixed everything together and compressed in the hydraulic. Compression allowed the circles on the base to merge together, which ensured that they are consistent in their shape,” he explained.

For his second work, Nai took help from his mother and other relatives, using their old discarded clothes to transform ordinary rods into a colourful pieces of art. “My mother used to collect old clothes for charity. Instead of keeping them in the cupboards, why could I not create an interesting piece of art from them? In my second scuplture, I have compressed these clothes in a mould and pasted them together on the rods by using an industrial glue. This piece of work is about saving spaces, density and can be called sustainable art,” he says.

This is the third time that the artist is showcasing his works at the India Art Fair. This year, his works are being showcased in a group show.