While most would look at discarded plastics, cans and other materials and think “trash”, two Gainesville residents are starting an
establishment that will turn local trash into art.
Sarah Goff and Mike Myers are starting The Repurpose Project, an organization that collects materials that would normally go to waste and uses them to create art. Today, Goff and Myers sold home goods, records and clothes, and also gave interested onlookers tours of the massive warehouse that will soon be transformed into an art space.
The Repurpose Project, which Goff predicts will open in early April, will encompass many forms of art, such as carvings, collages, jewelry making and painting. All art will use second-hand materials for creation.
“What we’re really trying to do is fill the recycle void,” Goff said, toting a purse made from old VHS film. “There are a lot of great materials out there with no place to go.”
The establishment, which is located in downtown Gainesville at 519 S. Main St., will be a three-part art studio: a workspace for art creation, a gallery for art display and a reuse art supply store.
Goff said they will attain the reusable materials by donation from individuals and businesses.
“Businesses spend a lot of money on disposal and we’re giving them a place where the can take their waste,” Goff said. “They can reduce costs, save money and green their business.”
The Repurpose Project is volunteer-based and plans to raise funds by offering movie viewings in the large warehouse for donations and having a yard sale every Saturday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Goff has previously worked at a creative reuse center in South Florida. Myers, who met Goff when she was looking for recycled lumber to build a tree house, has been in the recycling business for over 40 years. He also works to educate children on reuse by holding workshops in Gainesville schools. He hopes to hold similar workshops to teach art once The Repurpose Project is ready.
“It’s all about diversion from landfills and creating things people can use,” Myers said.
The Repurpose Project is currently looking for volunteers, artists and people to run education workshops.
Also, check out this old bottle that I scored from their yard sale that I am reusing as a vase. I’m loving the contrast of the pale green against the pink flower!