FEATURED ARTIST: Tracey Shough (Picapica)


Name: Tracey Shough (Picapica)
Location: Living near Gueret, France

My first flirt with recycling was way back in my foundation art course when we were taken to the local dump for a sculpture project. I was inspired at the time, first by the artist Bill Woodrow;  I particularly remember his guitar from a washing machine in the Tate in Britain. My final show there was a set of bright colored assemblages for children and a sculpture from a washing machine and other objects that toddlers could play in and around…..it had a watering can system that poured water around the sculpture….it was rubbish!


My life is recycled, not just my art….I almost never buy anything new….there is no need….I now do volunteer work at a recycling project locally…. I get to take home the stuff nobody wants!

My pieces evolve as the right bits appear….two objects might automatically fit so that is the start and then the rest simply emerges from there….sometimes the box might define the form it takes…sometimes a character emerges first….I am surrounded by stuff and I work on a few pieces at a time.


My inspiration comes originally from:  1. outsider art environments and 2. Religious shrines from all over the world; Day of the Dead altars, Hindu tree shrines, Catholic roadside shrines. My main interest is in art by people who don’t consider themselves artists. But more recently I get inspiration from artists all over the world who work with rubbish; through social networking.


My favorite and craziest piece so far is a huge installation I did for Glastonbury music festival entitled ‘Enough’ and was an anti -consumerist roadside shrine made entirely from discarded objects…pics on my blog: picapicastuff.blogspot.com more images on my Facebook page: ‘Traceypicapica’ and etsy.com/shops/picapicastuff

My advice to artists recycling is…don’t design something in your head then try and find the materials to make it….look at what materials you have and let the work evolve from there.


The amount of trash in this world means there should be no need for any artist these days to BUY materials new.


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