It was here that Alexandre Oliveira decided to make this cause the focus of his art. “I studied before I started to create, and looked into myself for how I wanted to pass this message along,” says the Brazilian artist. “I started to draw with natural ink, and avoided painting with acrylics and oils. I cleaned up my atelier too, putting everything in the right recycling bins.” But he noted that, even when you use the right bins, you never really know if those things are going to be recycled or not, so he decided on a different approach.
He began upcycling some of the items he found, whether that was from community cleanups or just collecting waste at home. From bottle caps and straws to clothing tags and masks, he now incorporates all of these into his art to give them a new life, and to raise discussion on the issue of environmental pollution. This creative concept served him well during the Covid-19 confinement in April. As the father of two children, Oliveira had begun working on writing and illustrating a children’s book. Proving to be stressful at times, he found his upcycling project to be a soothing and therapeutic outlet.