Beyond Denver: Turning Junk Mail into Art

Published November 2009 Vol. 13 Issue 10

by Alecia D. McKenzie

PARIS, France - Like everyone else, Barbara Hashimoto hated the junk mail coming in through the door. Until she decided one day that it could be transformed into art and lessons about the environment.
Hashimoto, a U.S.-born, Japanese-trained artist, has created “The Junk Mail Experiment,” in which huge quantities of unsolicited advertising mail are shredded into temporary installation art and eventually into sculptures. The “Experiment” is currently on view in Paris and in Chicago.

“I was working in a firm and was amazed at how much junk mail we received,” says Hashimoto, a slim dark-haired woman who speaks passionately about her work.

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