From Trash To Treasure: Beautiful Mosaic made from Old Shoes
Nigerian artist Eugene Konboye searches through a field of garbage for a specific type of trash that are plastic flip-flops, which he transforms into multi-colored mosaic portraits of his community.
Konboye, an artist and environmentalist claim that recycling flip-flops target one of the most polluting plastic items in Nigeria, the most populous country in Africa, which has more than 210 million people and is rapidly growing.
According to the UN Industrial Development Organization, only a small percentage of the waste is recycled in the West African country, where 200,000 tonnes of plastic spill into the Atlantic each year.
Konboye piles a huge mound of flip-flops he's collected into a corner of his studio with a shovel.
He then cleans them and cuts them into squares ranging in size from a typical ceramic wall tile to a large postage stamp.
According to Konboye, flip-flops are a major contributor to plastic pollution, and almost everyone owns at least one pair.
Portraits of the local community are created by the artist in Abeokuta, a city in Southwestern Osun State in Nigeria. He is occasionally compensated for his work and receives commissions from some clients.
Portraits emerge slowly on his studio walls from a pattern of multi-colored flip-flop pieces he arranges on backgrounds.
Trash mounds on roadsides, empty lots, and landfills are common sights in Nigeria, and recycling is uncommon.