Ring – Made from Plastic Spoon and Fork.
Handmade by Sonya Sanchez Arias
© SonyaSanchezArias.com

Reclaimed Beauty

My Recycled Art is therapy for me, it is a way for me to make sense of the total disregard and unconscious way in which we dispose of perfectly good items that we feel are no longer useful and have already served their purpose. By manipulating these discarded materials, I can reinvent their usefulness and reclaim their beauty in a totally new and unexpected way. Transforming them into new and unexpected items that have a new reason to exist.

Ring – Made from Plastic Knife
Handmade by Sonya Sanchez Arias
© SonyaSanchezArias.com

I have always felt the need to bring attention to the beauty and purpose of all things. So much energy, design and creativity goes into all the materials that we use in our day to day lives….yet so many of them are just ‘tossed out’ once their contents are emptied and their ‘perceived’ value has been served. I have always used scraps and odds and ends to create my personal work, the whole process of transforming discarded materials into something useful has always struck me as magical and gratifying. And over the years, that magical process has sent me on a journey of discovery, leading me to this intriguing and useful new form of art. Creating my Jewelry and Accessories out of discarded materials fills me with a sense of purpose, accomplishment and integrity and has become the perfect vehicle for translating my inner vision into an outer reality.

Ring – Made from recycled rubber tubing
Handmade by Sonya Sanchez Arias
© SonyaSanchezArias.com

I create from the inside out. Though I work quite deliberately, consciously exploring the attributes of my materials, addressing their limitations and creating innovative techniques by which I can manipulate them, my unconscious is the undisputed task master that carries me across the barriers into new and uncharted possibilities. This type of work frees my imagination and provides many opportunities for happy accidents and new techniques that influence and transform the finished product. Recently I revisited some of my older work (Paper Dresses made from Recycled Paper and Costumes made from various unconventional materials): much larger fashion pieces that resonate deeply with my jewelry and accessory work. Inspired and invigorated by a renewed sense of continuity, and amazed by the mystery of how creation occurs, I am now creating richly varied collections of Jewelry exploring many different materials, textures and colors.

Ring – Made from a plastic water bottle
Handmade by Sonya Sanchez Arias
© SonyaSanchezArias.com

If my work has a mission, it is this: To see the beauty and potential of all things, and the possibilities that a different point of view can create. It may be an empty water bottleplastic utensilsrubber tubing, electrical wires or plastic bags. Whatever the material or the original purpose, it can be transformed into something new and unexpected with a new reason for existing.

Ring – Made from plastic spoons and forks
Handmade by Sonya Sanchez Arias
© SonyaSanchezArias.com

I never set out to be an environmental artist or to create artwork relating to social commentary, I make my jewelry purely because I need to…..I must find a way to express my creativity.  None of it was intentional – it all developed and evolved over time. I’ve never found it easy to explain my work – when I make something that’s just how I want it to be – I’d like my work to speak for itself and whatever it says to the viewer – will be the right message  – Art is subjective and there isn’t a wrong or a right message.  Hopefully each person will see the work differently and connect with it in their own way and I’d be totally satisfied with that.

If you change the way you look at things…the things you look at change. -Wayne Dyer

All images © SanchezArias.com