Made out of very large whitegoods boxes the Amaze helps children to explore what worlds can be made with found recycled materials. A series of run-up workshops allows children to decorate large pieces of cardboard that are build into a maze. Local children add silhouettes of themselves, populating a cardboard maze world. The result is a solid network of tunnels, passages and hiding holes.
Established at the Cairns Children’s Festival, cardboard mazes were built in Tank 4 at the Cairns Tanks Art Centre. In the Tanks Art Centre the gallery space was used for a total of 4 weeks: 2 weeks building time with class visits, finished for the Children’s Festival on the middle weekend then the maze remained in place for 2 more weeks. This format is very flexible, requiring minimum of 1 day building time. Workshops can be held in gallery space or at the school. Amaze encourages a discussion of sustainability issues in terms of disposal of excess manufactured materials. This is perfect for a children’s festival or as the children’s entertainment at a sustainability event. Amaze is an opportunity for children and their carers to explore re-using easily available materials to create a fun environment to play in and explore.
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This is a large scale cardboard world that will fill any sized space. During construction it will benefit from as many volunteers as are available. On the day of festivals it needs volunteers inside the maze to direct children.
99% of materials used are recycled – this does require a little planning to source material, however every town in Australia has goods arriving in corrugated cardboard and my experience of retail businesses and loading bay workers is that they are very happy to help and be involved.
Ruby Boussard is an eco-artist who promotes awareness of waste in our environment by making artworks, wearable art, running recycled craft workshops and community theatre. She is a dedicated Community Arts and Cultural Development worker. She uses recycled materials to produce a wide range of art. In making artwork from rubbish she aims to draw attention to the problem of environmental pollution.
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The maze world is a sustainable playground, constructed mainly from cardboard.
Ruby offers fun, engaging and organic education. She gives a hands-on, educational experience with cross-generational interaction. Her vision is to promote education and awareness of wastage through recycled arts and craft workshops. She brings families together to make a difference. The results of the survey conducted during the 2015 Cairns Children’s Festival were outstanding with 53% satisfied, 44% very satisfied and when asked how we can improve the festival in the future 5% of comments were from people asking for a bigger maze.
Amaze is a series of workshops leading to the creation of a large-scale installation. Children are involved in the decorating process, illustrating their since of place and then bringing their families back to the art centre to see their work and see the final result. Pre-booked workshops ensure the audience participation.
Marketing Materials available: Photos from 8 different installations; Educational booklet; workshops before, during and after.
This project is about ownership of space and discussion of wastage and sustainability.
The workshops normalise gallery visits by children. The children then bring the parents to the gallery to see their art. The community participation aims to empower children and their families to say no to consumerism. Happiness is time together making things. The cardboard maze is an example of the child playing with the box while the flashy plastic toy lies untouched.
Building awareness of how much manufactured waste is available freely. There is an opportunity to engage local businesses who use large cardboard boxes - furniture and white goods retailers, and crash repair shops. Emptying their bins of cardboard is useful to them and spreading the word about the project.