Waste 2 Art Mid-Western 2023

12 May – 19 June 23

Waste 2 Art Web Event Graphic 2023 PAGE HEADER.JPG

The Year of Textiles & Fast Fashion


WASTE 2 ART Mid-Western 2023 is a community art exhibition and competition open to all local residents. It showcases creative works made from reused and recyclable waste materials. The aim is to challenge people’s perceptions about ‘rubbish’ and to celebrate the reuse and recycling of waste through arts and crafts.

Waste to Art provides an innovative approach to waste education, invites individuals, artists, makers, schools and community groups to take up the challenge and create a new life for materials that would otherwise have been thrown away. Instead of ending up in landfill, these waste materials can be turned into fantastic works of art.

This competition gives aspiring and professional artists the chance to explore and share their ‘waste reduction’ message.

This year’s waste theme is textiles and fast fashion.

Waste 2 Art Mid-Western 2023 Winners


Kylie Whale
Qwerty Integration

Class: Community  Section: 2 Dimensional

I was supporting a client disassemble some e-waste which he subsequently turned into a Waste 2 Art project. I noticed that he hadn’t used the keys from the laptops or the keyboards he had pulled apart so decided to make use of them. The keys were popped out of their housing, washed, sorted and glued somewhat haphazardly to an old canvas. The artwork from a distance reminded me of stars in the night sky but not so much up close hence the different title. I’m sure this concept is far from the original however, it was a fun way to use up what would have otherwise been more discarded e-waste.



'The Loft' after school activity program Kandos
Free Fashion Forever

Class: Community  Section: Functional - furniture, craftworks, wearable

Free fashion forever. Recycling things in our community could give the possibility of never having to spend money on clothes again!!

Clothing can be made from many different materials, there are endless possibilities to reuse the things around us for clothing.

Living in a rural area there is an abundance of animal feed bags that enter landfill.

Our garment shows the use of a chook food bags, recycled shower cap boxes, recycled art supplies and the creativity of our young people.

Shower cap boxes are an indicator of our ‘throw-away’ and changing society. We no longer use shower caps on a regular basis. This has allowed conversation from our young people about the amount of rubbish in society and the amount of clothing that is discarded.



Molly O'Byrne
Polly dog
Class: Community  Section: 3 Dimensional

This work is made from recycled aluminium collected from our local scrapyard. I’ve separated strands from these leftover cable pieces from a local solar farm to create a frame for my dog’s figure then I added more pieces to make an image of Polly, my 10-month-old groodle. I love our new dog and my sister made an image of herself to pair with my sculpture “The solar industry is becoming increasingly aware that to be truly sustainable, we must find a way to reduce waste. But to date, most discussions have focused on recycling panels at the end of their lifespan.”
How to solve the challenge of utility solar construction waste right now Solar Builder magazine November 7, 2022

– so I created my own solution and made a sculpture!



Kirrily Duff

Class: Open   Section: Functional - furniture, craftworks, wearable

A celebration of my friend Waagan.

This wearable art piece is made up of many re-purposed pieces including yarn, scraps, buttons, bark, paper scraps, hessian offcuts, collected beads and pendants from broken jewellery and feathers.

I have added polymer clay and acrylic paint to bring this piece together.



Helen McLennan
Cotton Waisted

Class: Open   Section: 3 Dimensional

There are three ‘mannequin’ style sculptures with cotton plants for heads, as well as one sculpture of a tap pouring out cascades of clothing and pooling into puddles of colour. They have been made from cheap recycled clothing, mostly cotton, chicken wire, wire, plastic bottles and PVA glue. This work was inspired by the vast amounts of water used in the Australian cotton industry to produce cheap, fast clothing, which is mostly manufactured in Asian countries and then sold back to Australia for a very cheap price, often worn only a few times, then sent to landfill. The use of plastic containers form the bodies of the ‘mannequins’ and suggest the female form, whilst the clothing loosely references various fashion styles from different eras.

My love of clothing and drapery has also been an influence.




Cudgegong Valley Public School
Crazy, Wired Animals

Primary School Section: 3 Dimensional

At our school we have been learning about waste and recycling.

The children were shocked by the amount of clothes that go into landfill each year and how much water is used to produce fabric. We decided to reuse clothing in a new and exciting way by making wire sculptures and using used clothing somehow. Creating a crazy, wire sculpture animal and wrapping fabric around them might produce some great results. The children brought in used, old clothing from home and even some of mum’s nighties. Netwaste inspired us and demonstrated how to make the 3D sculptures, bringing to life the wire and old, used clothing which could have ended up in landfill to produce something really fantastic and fun.



Art by You Term 2 
Woof woof

Class: Primary School Section: 2 Dimensional

Treated timber sawdust is generated on a large scale as an industrial waste that requires careful disposal into the environment. It is considered a hazardous material due to risk of inhalation and chemical leaching. In Australia treated timber sawdust must be double bagged and put into landfill.

We wanted to draw a link between disposing of industrial waste and how people dispose of their unwanted living pets. It is so sad that since Covid restrictions eased the dog pounds are now full again and beautiful dogs of all breeds are discarded. We created these gorgeous doggy collages out of sawdust. We love that such simple lines can distinguish different breeds of dog and we wanted to highlight how gorgeous these living creatures are and that they deserve love and have so much love to give.



Dominick Carpenter
City from Above


Class: Secondary School Section: 2 Dimensional

I enjoy taking apart broken electronics, laptops, TV’s etc. It is lots of fun and so interesting to see the ‘brains’ inside these things. There is so much e-waste around these days. The circuit boards and mother boards reminded me of looking at a city from above when it is all lit up. This was the inspiration behind my artwork. I ended up including lots of other laptop parts as well which represent the lakes and green spaces in a city. I had so much fun making this and am really happy with how it turned out. I hope you like my ‘City from Above’ too. 
This artwork has been created by a 14-year-old boy with autism. His support worker, Kylie helped him write this artwork description.



Piper Hannaford

Class: Secondary School Section: 3 Dimensional

My work is inspired by the likes of Coraline (film) and the directing style of Tim Burton. I enjoy the versatility of using an unusual mixed media including wire, air-dry clay, recycled clothing and material, yarn, pieces of nature (rocks, sticks, etc.). The intention of my art is to communicate to the viewer (especially future generations) that just because something is different, weird, or strange, doesn’t mean that it’s not art.




The competition includes categories to challenge and stimulate the imagination:

2 Dimensional – Poster/Painting/Collage/Drawing

3 Dimensional – Sculpture/Installation

Functional – Furniture, craftworks and wearable items made from recycled materials

Entries may be submitted in the following five groups:

Primary School

Secondary School



Creative Repair, Restore and Refurbish.

Read the full terms and conditions here.(PDF, 237KB)



All of the winning artworks from each local competition will be transported to a Regional Exhibition, in Blayney in July.



Contact the Cultural Team at Mudgee Arts Precinct for more information.

PHONE NUMBER: 02 6378 2850

EMAIL: map@midwestern.nsw.gov.au