The U.S. generates almost 2.5 million tons of used electronics every year, according to the EPA. Most of us simply recycle our obsolete gadgets, but American artist and electronics repairman Steven Rodrig dreamed up a slightly more inventive solution to the e-waste problem – use it to create one-of-a-kind works of art.
Rodrig’s collection includes large-scale sculptures of insects, shoes and even a bra made with printed circuit boards (PCBs) from recycled computers and electronics. Appropriately dubbed PCB Creations, the collection includes intricate, detailed pieces utilizing the distinctive color and structure of each circuit board.
The e-artist embraces his medium, saying “the design on each board [is] unique and perfect.” Rodrig uses the varied textures and shapes of each board to craft whimsical creations, like this life-size replica of Dorothy’s iconic ruby slippers from “The Wizard of Oz.”
“Since there is no guarantee that I will ever come across the same PCB again, each piece is one of a kind,” Rodrig says of the collection. Take a close look this bra sculpture, entertainingly titled “Supporting Her Data,” and you’ll notice that each component differs slightly in color and pattern.
The Hillsborough, N.J.-based artist uses other gadget components like microchips, connecting cables and aerials to supplement circuit boards in his creative designs. Years of tinkering with electronics gives Rodrig a unique insight into the materials, making for stunningly detailed works of art.
Each of Rodrig’s designs is more elaborate than the last. His large-scale city skyline, entitled “Data Spider’s Kingdom,” is possibly the most awe-inspiring piece in the collection. Intricate skyscrapers surround the artist’s creepy spider in a science fiction-lovers fantasy.
Want a closer look at the e-waste art? Check out Rodrig’s online portfolio, or purchase a piece of your own on his Etsy shop. Prices range from $25 to $3,500. So, you’re bound to find a fun design to suit your budget.