By Josh Saunders and Luke Kenton
CAN you believe it? Art exhibit transforms tinned food into pop-art that could rival the work of CAN-dy Warhol or Vincent CAN Gogh.
From Popeye the Sailor CAN to designs referencing Game of Thrones, Pokemon, Beauty and the Beast, Pac-Man and more, entrees certainly needed a CAN-do attitude.
Celebrating its 25th anniversary, Canstructuction is a design competition where teams create gravity-defying pieces from 100,000 unopened-cans of food.
Twenty-six teams of architects, engineers and students spent 12 weeks designing their creations and assembled the thousands of cans in a single night.
The event is part of the City Harvest and will later donates the tins to food shelters, soup kitchens and other food relief efforts to feed over 21,000 hungry families in New York.
Over the ten years the competition has been held at Brookfield Place in Manhattan, New York, nearly a million cans have been used, which is over 752, 617lb (53,758stone) of food, the same weight as three blue whales.
Notable designs included Popeye made from 6,458 cans who will later feed 1,832 New Yorkers and the Throne from Game of Thrones using over 5,000 cans and feeding 2,344 people.
Others include: Pac Man, Snorlax, a pair of dice, a jellyfish, a video game, a pumpkin, messages of peace and other arty designs.
Katie Devlin, AIA, President of Canstruction New York Inc. said: “For 25 years, Canstruction New York has been the most extraordinary design competition for architects, engineers and contractors that not only raises awareness about hunger but also provides a solution with thousands of cans of food donated to City Harvest.”
“The exhibition has to be seen in person to fully comprehend the artistry of each sculpture.”
“For many New Yorkers, income hasn’t kept up with the rising cost of living, and many households lack the income needed to cover basic necessities like food, housing, transportation, and childcare.
New York is one of 150 cities around the world taking part in Canstruction International Competition, which has donated more than 40 million pounds of food to hunger relief programs.
Jilly Stephens, Chief Executive Officer of City Harvest, said: “Nearly 1.3 million residents struggle to put meals on their tables, and City Harvest is committed to rescuing and delivering 59 million pounds of food this year to ensure that our neighbors in need have enough food.
“For 25 years, Canstruction has been an important partner in our hunger relief work.
“We are proud to once again rescue food from this year’s exhibition and distribute it to 500 community food programs across New York City’s five boroughs.”
The event which has been held at Arts Brookfield for ten years, has seen an array of designs in previous including larger a than life crab, carousel, a Snapchat symbol, Yoshi character and even a mock-up of the Guggenheim art gallery.
Elysa Marden, Vice President, Arts Brookfield said: “Arts Brookfield is incredibly proud to be hosting Canstruction for a tenth year; the creative event marks an annual Thanksgiving tradition that embodies the spirit of generosity.
“We hope that visitors will be inspired to spread awareness about those who are in need.”
For more information about Canstruction as well as Arts Brookfield’s full schedule of events, visit artsbrookfield.com