Trash aesthetics: Carroll Park seeks artists to paint garbage cans

Brooklyn Paper
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This art stinks!

Fans of a Carroll Gardens park are looking for local artists to gussy up the green space by creating some new designs to cover its metal garbage cans. Carroll Park’s trash receptacles have been sporting artworks for a decade, and locals say the lick of paint makes a big difference.

“It makes something utilitarian look very special,” said Katia Kelly of volunteer group Friends of Carroll Park, which keeps the Carroll and Court street garden looking pretty.

The group first asked creative Carroll Gardeners to paint the bulky black bins in 2006 when the city’s parks department brought them in to replace more basket-like cans that were attracting rats, Kelly said.

The response was overwhelming and the results — which included bee paintings and avant-garde splatter pieces — were such a hit the department has since replicated the scheme in other local parks.

But those bins are now rusted through, and the city is replacing them with 20 blank barrels in need of some creative genius.

Artists can pitch any design they can dream up, but the winners will have to provide their own paint and ensure it is something that can stand up to a decade in the elements. For its part, the volunteer group will kick in $100 per can for rat-proof lids and will spray a coat of polyurethane on top for extra protection.

Competition for a can-vas could be tough, though — the group posted flyers around the park a few days ago and its phones are already ringing off the hook, according to one member.

“We’ve gotten a lot of interest already,” said Gary Dolan. “The only problem will be having to choose.”

Locals who want to submit designs can e-mail

Reach reporter Lauren Gill at or by calling (718) 260–2511. Follow her on Twitter @laurenk_gill
Updated 10:17 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

deadline from Carroll Gardens says:
The deadline for submitting drawings is March 26.
March 3, 2016, 10:17 am

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