If you visit the less affluent parts of any developing country, you’re sure to find used and condemned tires dotting the landscape, making the city ugly. Disposing of these useless tires becomes a big problem for the authorities.
Something similar was happening in Lagos, Nigeria.
Lagos is known for its beautiful beach resorts, quality boutiques, and happening nightlife.
However, the city also has its share of carelessly disposed of condemned tires that spoil the cityscape. Despite the initiative being taken by certain companies to recycle these tires and use them to make shoes and other items, they continue to remain an eyesore.
Nkwocha Ernest, a Lagos-based artist, took it upon himself to beautify his city by turning this ugly mess of worn out and discarded tires into something creative. He hit upon the idea of turning them into rubber sculptures.
Sculpting rubber from old worn out tires isn’t easy, but it’s to Ernest’s credit that he found ways to make the tires malleable enough to be molded into the desired forms. Having mastered the skills of tire sculpting, he devotes hours to create his art pieces, stage by stage. And his passion is quite evident in his works.
Ernest’s creations of a crocodile, a jumping ox, a long-eared rabbit, a gorilla, and many others seem almost lifelike. And why not, he spends hours informing them by heating up the tire rubber and uses his vivid imagination to give a precise shape to his sculptures.
It’s really incredible that he’s able to accomplish this since tires are tough, and are designed to sustain the daily wear and tear of running on the road.
Little wonder his art is making waves on the internet and gaining a lot of appreciation for all and sundry after it was introduced by a social media user on Twitter.
I would like to thank Deepak Mehla for additional information regarding this amazing artist. I would also like to thank my friend Kim Calhoun for bringing up this artist again.
I have seen some of his work in other articles, so I wanted to do a more detailed piece. His artwork is both MAGNIFICENT & INSPIRATIONAL.