Make Waste Visible

visibility art

Urban interventions exposing the volume of waste generated by towns and cities.


Many projects in the urban waste field adopt the perspective of making waste disappear as efficiently and quickly as possible from citizen's eyes. Despite the good intentions, this approach might make local societies unaware of the volume of waste it generates, and by extension to the cost and socio-environmental impact of managing it.

Invite artists, designers and activists through residence programs, hackathons and commissions to inform local populations about the volume of waste generated, reused and recycled.

Open Questions

  • How to involve local groups in the discussion and reflection


to come

Target Groups

  1. Council / Local Authority
  2. Community Reuse

Supporting Research Data

"There was a bit of criticism that actually with… I mean, I work a lot with organisations that are funded by the Climate Challenge Fund and so a lot of the projects seem to focus on poverty and poor areas and it is, like you say, about saving money and food waste and things like that. But, actually, saying maybe some more of the funding should be targeting the wealthy areas because actually when people have too much money, they can afford to go out and buy new stuff all the time and don't see the value in reusing or repairing."


Many projects treat waste as subject or material for artistic intervention.

Recology Aritst in Residence

The Artist in Residence (AIR) Program at Recology San Francisco is a unique art and education program that provides Bay Area artists with access to discarded materials, a stipend, and a large studio space at the Recology San Francisco Recycling and Transfer Station. By supporting artists who work with reused materials, Recology hopes to encourage people to conserve natural resources and promote new ways of thinking about art and the environment.

Recology / Artatthedump Flickr albums:

  • []


Brazilian collective exploring an aesthetics of reuse.

Art, Design, Technology, Invention, Reuse, Education


Some among many documentaries working to make waste visible.

Ernesto Oroza

Cuban designer Ernesto Oroza collects examples of what he calls technological disobedience and architecture of necessity.

This research blog/virtual archive was commissioned by the artist and curator Nicolas Maigret for the virtual exhibition «Futurs non-conformes», presented from April until October 2016 on Jeu de Paume’s virtual space.

I am using Architecture of necessity term as a metaphor. On the one hand it can be read as a descriptive term, austere in its rhetorical value, almost obvious. On the other hand, the term enunciates an architecture that is its self-diagram, and this image becomes structural and programmatic. I believe that architecture should be that. The home must be a structure of agreements. A factual connection between needs, materials, technology, urban regulations and social conditions.

European Week for Waste Reduction

The theme for this year's (2020) theme of the European Week for Waste Reduction is "invisible waste".

This year, the EWWR challenges you to get informed and raise awareness on the huge amount of waste that we all unconsciously generate. We need to make this waste visible in order to make informed decisions when choosing which product to purchase, and take responsibility for our footprint. Producers, consumers, decision-makers, we all can take action to reduce the invisible waste. Extending the life of products by reuse and repair, buying second-hand, renting and sharing products rather than owning them, obtaining an eco-label and joining producer responsibility’s schemes… The list is long!


Basurama es un colectivo dedicado a la investigación, creación y producción cultural y medioambiental fundado en 2001 que ha centrado su área de estudio y actuación en los procesos productivos, la generación de desechos que éstos implican y las posibilidades creativas que suscitan estas coyunturas contemporáneas. Nacido en la Escuela de Arquitectura de Madrid ha ido evolucionando y adoptando nuevas formas desde sus orígenes. Pretende estudiar fenómenos inherentes a la producción masiva de basura real y virtual en la sociedad de consumo aportando nuevas visiones que actúen como generadores de pensamiento y actitud. Detecta resquicios dentro de estos procesos de generación y consumo que no sólo plantean interrogantes sobre nuestra forma de explotar los recursos, sino también sobre nuestra forma de pensar, de trabajar, de percibir la realidad.

Images used on this page

Previous Post Next Post

EU Flag This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 813508.