michael johanson trash art

… and at first glance, it almost looks like an structure one could occupy. Alas, it is only a piece of art. ‘Only’ because it could be so much neater if someone could actually live, work and/or play inside of it – a useful and unique addition to the surrounding townhouses.

trash building installation

To be fair, for Michael Johansson this is the latest in a long line of really amazing artworks (from super-sized sculptures to installation projects) that do not ‘work’ in a strictly functional sense, but are still inspiring. This piece in particular, though, seems so close to being a ‘real’ space one could use.

shipping container art installation

Shipping containers, garbage bins, wood pallets, cars, tractors, trailers, refrigerators and motor homes may not be the normal building blocks we are used to but they provide a lovely contrast of structural solids, sculptural figures and spaces in between.

shipping container sculpture angle

There is a point to the trash heap (no negativity meant to be implied) titled ‘Self Contained’ – something about modernization and industrialization – but as a work of camouflage ‘garbage coutoure’ it is perhaps best appreciated as an aesthetic object, or perhaps architectural inspiration.

“It is important to me that the objects within each work are connected on several levels, that not only the notions of color and shape adds up, but that the objects also make sense between themselves when it comes to qualities such as origin and spirit of time,” Johansson says in an interview with Hamamag. “But of even greater importance is that the work has the ability to connect with the viewer on several levels.”

kubikk michael johansson
Kubikk by Michael Johansson

“Dealing with our generation’s obsession with ‘things’ is of course one major aspect of my work. But I am also intrigued by questions about functionality, efficiency, and the thin line between order and chaos, to mention some. I would never bother spending all this time putting my pieces together if I didn’t think my work held commentaries on today’s way of living, but I think the interpretation of the work can, and must, vary with each person, depending on their very own experiences and view on life.”