Paper Mache Collage Aesthetic

For my upcycling project, I decided to use something that is plentiful and abundant that is usually thrown away as waste: paper. Paper Mache is an art and craft form that involves using all types of paper, mostly newspapers, in order to recreate something. Most of the time, Paper Mache creations are fragile and usually only useful as art pieces. But, some can serve utilitarian functions if designed and reinforced to be by other materials or massive amounts of paper. For example, the paper mache chair and paper mache bowl are designed to work as an armchair and bowl respectively.




But, for my aesthetic specifically, I’ve decided to explore an aesthetic that uses recycled paper often and would be perfect to mix with. That aesthetic would be collage. This is an aesthetic that stems from an art form from the early 20th Century, whos notable artists include those the like of Kurt Schwitters. Collage is the art of mixing a multitude of random media and taking them apart and mashing the parts together to create a new encompassing whole. The same approach can be applied to Paper Mache crafts if I used more than just newspaper and use other colorful paper types like Magazine ads or posters.


I decided to go through with collage as an aesthetic because I thought it would reflect the assignment of upcycling pretty well. Reusing a tool like paper that is so easily discarded and using a random assortment of them in order to create something useful seems like the epitome of upcycling to me.


[1]:Marcus Fairs | 12 July 2007 18 comments. (2019, April 10). Papier-mache armchair BY Majid Asif. Retrieved February 07, 2021, from

[2]:Lehnhardt, P. (2020, November 03). Papier-mache bowls for mother’s day. Retrieved February 07, 2021, from

[3]:Self-Expression: Collage And Journaling: Aviary recovery center. (2019, December 31). Retrieved February 07, 2021, from

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2 Comments. Leave new

  • Hi Sidd!

    I really enjoy paper mache and collage art and I think that using those ideas as the basis of your project will produce a really interesting final product! I think that with recycled paper you have so many options that it leaves you a lot of room for creativity and making something truly unique. Do you have a specific idea of what you are going to make for your collage? Like what the focus will be? Or will you be sort of figuring that out on the fly as you find interesting pieces of recycled paper to use?

  • This is a really interesting idea for your upcycle and I am excited to see how it goes. While also using newspaper that is around, depending on how far you want to go you can always look into making your own paper from scraps around your house. It really isn’t that hard of a process as long as you are okay with using an old blender to make the pulp. My main question about your project though is about the structural integrity of your chair. Is this going to be small scale or large scale and are you going to use wood or some other type of material as the base of your design?


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