‘Upcycling’ is the coolest trend out there in design and art. While sustainability has caught the imagination of plenty of artists out there, some like Boris Bally have put up-cycled art right up there on the design disruption map. SUNDAY GREEN ART DIGEST along with sustainable art digital gallery Offcyclers, we will give you the lowdown on the metal genius Boris Bally!
Upcycling genius Boris Bally
Have you ever wondered where old traffic signs end up once they’re no longer in use? Most of them get dumped in trash yards, where they rust and rot. Big deal right? For one man it was. Boris Bally saw more than rusted junk and he decided to give them new life.
To call Boris simply a metal smith is plain wrong. He is a metal genius with a unique talent to envision what can be done with what is no longer useful. Son to an industrial designer and an artist, both of them Swiss who migrated to the US to study in the Illinois Institute of Technology, Boris Bally grew up under the influence of both design and art. Ever since he took his first metal class back in 1974, Boris knew his life would be related to metal and the wonders that this material had to offer.
As a teenager, he made and sold jewellery and after high school he apprenticed under famous Swiss goldsmith Alexander Schaffner. The whole experience was pivotal to his development as an artist and as a person. Post Switzerland he attended Art School, where his urge for exploration and creativity brought him to experiment with different materials and techniques.
And this led him to working with traffic signs and exploring upcycling as an art form.
Upcycling is the name of the game!
One of Bally’s most iconic creations, the Transit Traffic Sign Chair, is a masterpiece that has been mentioned in the biggest design blogs, and is acclaimed as one of the greatest creations in upcycling, art and modern design history. Through a series of meticulous folds, and using the techniques of modular pieces, such as the ones used by Ikea furniture, the Transit Chair is a comfortable and elegant piece that creates conversations and stirs emotions, while being a functional and fun piece of modern design. With champagne corks used as stoppers, the piece not only protects your home, but also becomes an ode to reusability and upcycling.
Some other iconic creations are the Transit Street Sign Table – a fabulous and quirky statement piece that will give that signature modern look to any home.
Then there is the Broadway Armchair– with armrests and a low seating point, it’s the perfect chair to recline in while watching tv or curling up with a book. Bally also creates decorative statement pieces like the elegant Pentatray, DOT Coasters, and the DPW Platter. Your home will come alive with these elegant and sustainable designs.
There is no doubt that Boris Bally is an amazing metal smith, but he is also an iconic artist and designer who will be remembered as one of the most prolific of his era. We know his work will go down in history as revolutionary and ahead of his time, and the future will see it increase in value. For us, his work is a must in any urban space that is looking for a bit of sustainable elegance, while keeping it simple.
To learn more about Boris Bally, visit his Atelier profile at Offcyclers.
And keep tuning into our SUNDAY GREEN ART DIGEST- a monthly column that will bring to you hand picked sustainable art projects from around the world. Be it up-cycling or working with sustainable materials, come discover premium sustainable art designs & pieces in this new feature with UrbanMeisters + Offclyclers.