Artist creates sculptural furniture from discarded tyres

This Senegalese artist finds scrap tyres to turn into functional pieces of furniture.

Senegalese artist Amadou Fatoumata Ba begins his creative process by picking up trash, but his work isn’t focussed on sustainable design. Ba is fascinated with sturdiness and history of discarded tyres. Working only at night, the artist creates sculptural seating and other art pieces using worn-out tyres that he finds in the street.

“I like them because they’re indestructible,” he says. “And when I start a piece, I never know where it will end up.”

Ba discovered his appreciation for old tyres in 2001. After working for one year, Ba managed to launch his first installation, titled African Tempo. Now, working out his studio in the suburbs of Dakar, Ba creates well-known, junk-inspired pieces which include chairs, sofas and other sculptural structures.

In 2014, Ba was part of a collective of artists called Les Petites Pierres. They turned the streets of Grand Dakar, Ouakam and Medina into interactive art spaces for the first “Festival Interference”. The event is a week-long street performance festival that the group organised to coincide with the 10th Biennale of Contemporary African Art. 

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