SALVAGE-d Art at the Judy


Ian Kulpa’s The Kitchen Table, abandoned in the age of technology. Photo: Holly Fenwick


Nine Brisbane artists have used household items sourced from tip shops to create art for Salvage, Brisbane City Council’s recycling Art Exhibition.

Artist Ian Kulpa created one of the pieces, The Kitchen Table, inspired by a conversation with a tip shop employee about how there is no longer a need for the kitchen table, and as families have abandoned it for television and technology.

“There was a whole sea of kitchen tables and I picked one and he told me five bucks so I asked him why are they so cheap? He said no one buys kitchen tables anymore,” Kulpa said.

Kulpa explained a closer look at the piece depicts a family. The bold neon chairs represent the children, while the more muted tones represent the mother and father, and the table portrays the technology that has taken over the heart of the home.

“There’s a mum and a dad, a boy and a girl and the top of the table has these people on their mobile phones, not communicating, checking Facebook, tweeting and I thought that would send a message,” Kulpa said.

The father chair from ‘The Kitchen table’. Photo: Holly Fenwick


Another Salvage artist, Karen Benjamin created a piece called ‘Once I was eight’ and works solely with recyclable and reusable materials.

“I am an artist who only uses recycled materials, so when I saw the call-outs for the Salvage Exhibition I knew I had to be involved… I was thrilled to be a part of the exhibition and to be with a group of like-minded people has truly been inspiring,” Ms Benjamin said.

‘When I was eight’ by Karen Benjamin. Photo: Holly Fenwick


Vote for your favourite artist by 10 August either at the exhibition or online at and the top three artists will win a share of $5000.

The exhibition is open until 19 August (excluding Sundays) at The Judith Wright Centre of Contemporary Arts and entry is free.

To check out more from the artists follow Ian Kulpa’s Facebook page Studio George, Shorncliffe and Karen Benjamin at


Holly Fenwick

Writer. TV enthusiast. Strong views on political and social issues.

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