Artist Paul Villinski has been working with discarded debris for almost twenty years now. He began exploring waste as an artistic medium after seeking treatment for alcohol and drug addiction. In particular, the empty beer cans he would see on the streets of New York City affected him. He started collecting them and eventually created beautiful works of art with them. Villinski has been quoted as saying he is “fascinated by the simple alchemy of transforming humble, discarded materials into things of beauty and layered meaning.” Fast forward twenty years and the painter who first began exploring sculpture by extending his two dimensional paintings into three dimensional pieces by adding objects in front of the paintings is now an acclaimed sculptor with a solo retrospective exhibition at the Taubman Museum of Art in Roanoke, Virginia.
Flower Bomber and several other works of art made of recycled material were created specifically for this twenty year retrospective exhibition at the Taubman Museum of Art by Villinski and after they were loaded onto a truck outside the artist’s studio in New York City, ready to be shipped to the museum in Roanoke, Virginia – they were stolen.
Written by Myka Burke