By Victory Oduneye
Metal waste is very common because it cannot be destroyed by fire like our plastic and paper wastes. Consequently, they lie fallow and become hazardous waste.
However, a visual artist has decided to help the society tackle the risks, by turning metal wastes into beautiful pieces to be used as decorations in homes, offices and other places.
He spoke to TheNewsBeam on how he does this, what inspires him, the challenges and patronage for his work.
My name is Marcus Maxwell. I studied Visual Art at Yaba College of Technology, Lagos State, Nigeria.
What informed your choice of study?
I chose to study Visual Art in Higher institution because it’s something I’ve always known and loved. From my tender age I’ve been drawing, so I decided to go into it and further in the higher institution to know what it entails to be an artist.
What’s your brand name, and where is it located?
CREWA DESIGNS. It is located at 110/114 Apapa Oshodi Expressway, Lagos State, Nigeria. (Note, this is a temporary address).
How lucrative is this business?
It depends on your skills and how technical you are with manipulation of materials. Yes, it’s very lucrative, but you must have gained a lot of experience and skill before you actually go into it. But it is lucrative.
What inspires you in this business, especially to continue
What I actually do is to transform waste into functional objects, both for exterior and interior spaces. So what inspires me is that there are a lot of wastes in society and fine people are actually doing what they can to reduce the waste like recycling and the rest, but it’s not just enough. So I’m actually playing my role in the whole waste reduction, by transforming these wastes into functional objects.
For example, nails are everywhere and they are really harmful, so why just leave them on the road, why not transform them into something beautiful for spaces.
So basically the reduction of waste in society inspires me.
How well do you think Nigerians are into this business
Hmmm, it’s gradually surfacing, not everyone is aware of the business. Like I said you have to have the technical skills before venturing into the business. So we are just a few individuals in this particular line of business.
What is the level of patronage?
Yea, Nigerians patronize the business, but the business itself is diverse in terms of pricing. So what I do is that I try to make these pieces for everyone to actually meet their budget. We have the low income individuals, the average, and the rich and high. So, I can say Nigerians do patronize depending on the product.
What Challenges do you encounter in the business?
The challenge I face is the supply of electricity. It’s actually annoying because you have to burn fuel almost every time. You know, you need to cut this, wield this, do something with the electric power every time, but there is no electric power. We run diesel every time and it’s quite annoying because we have to pay for the light we are not using and also spend so much on fuel for the generator.
What are your future plans for this business and how it can affect the society?
So my future plan is us living in a world where we upcycle materials, like having little waste in society. A place where we transform waste into functional materials. Like I can go to any place and it’s not messy. Inside me I see those wastes being transformed into beautiful pieces for exterior and interior spaces.
And this affects the society by keeping it clean and sustainable. So it’s like having an environment that is more sustainable for us humans and other living things.
How can the Government support this business?
The government can support the business by giving us light (electricity). That’s what I need because I need light. The light is really really bad. And you can’t work without light in this business. So we need a constant supply of light, that’s how they can support the business.
How much do you need to start this business and what do you need to start?
To start this business the amount you need depends, for example when I started I had some basic tools at my disposal. So if you are trying to start from scratch you will spend more getting materials and equipment, but if it’s something you’ve always been doing and you have the basic tools, you can start small by creating these pieces little by little.