An Artist’s Guide to Creative Reuse


Alyssa Kail '14 publishes a guide to creative recycling for artists and entrepreneurs.

Current MFA in Applied Craft and Design student Alyssa Kail ’14 has just published The Social Entrepreneur’s Guide to Starting a Creative Reuse Center with collaborator Kelley Carmichael Casey.


Alyssa Kail, ’14. Photo courtesy of

Kail, along with Casey, works at SCRAP, where she has volunteered since 2007, and has worked since 2009. SCRAP collects donations of clean and reusable art, craft, and office supplies She has a BA in Environmental Studies from University of Pittsburgh and is a Master Recycler.

Kail isn’t the first AC+D student to actively look for ways to reuse discarded materials in their art practice. Leslie Vigeant, MFA AC+D ’11 received one of the inaugural 2011 Recology Fellowships through Cracked Pots and Metro. Recology Fellows have special access to the Metro Central Transfer Station and use material they find there to create art pieces. Vigeant’s experience at the Transfer Station proved pivotal to her graduate thesis work and to her recent show at the Portland Building.

“We live in a world that is swollen with materials,” says Vigeant. “Yet most makers resort to store bought purchases to fabricate their work…When I make a beautiful or intriguing piece out of post consumer products, it is more alive with a cultural resonance than anything I could buy at a store.” (1)

PNCA faculty member Chandra Glaeseman is a current 2012 Recology, or GLEAN, Fellow.

Kail and Casey will be tabling with their book at the Reuse Expo, October 18-20, 2012 in Portland.


A few of the materials available at SCRAP, and the kinds of materials Kail and Carmichael propose for creative reuse. Photo courtesy of

[1] From the Recology Blog, April 21, 2011,

by Killeen Hanson, MFA ACD '12

— Posted on 10/12 at 01:16 PM

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