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Better than recycling: How to transform cardboard into a masterpiece

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Better than recycling: How to transform cardboard into a masterpiece

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5 minute read

This year, we are proud to celebrate the films and artisans here by collaborating at the 37th edition of the cinephile Rendez-Vous Québec Cinéma festival!

For this occasion, we went to meet the local artist, SMOLUK. The artist’s specialty? Creating sculptures from cardboard. It is possible that you’ve seen one of SMOLUK’s sculpture while walking through the streets of Montreal!

Yes, the artist has a strong passion for street-art, as well as by the opportunity to give this material that SMOLUK finds on the street a second life.

At Polysleep, our mattresses are packed in a cardboard box. And as sometimes faith is cruel, a few of our boxes became orphans as we were not able to use them (old logo and all that, not fun!). So, what better idea than to give them to the artist to build a décor for the festival?

This is how the photobooth “A trip to the Moon” was born, a nod to the early cinema days and to the world of dreams that we know so well at Polysleep.

We are going to keep the mystery around the artist, who does not wish to give away its identity! We are going to unwrap a little of this mystery in this interview where the artist is going to unveil itself...

Why did you choose cardboard to make Art?

I chose cardboard to make Art, as first of all it is a free material that we can find everywhere (packaging, recycling on the streets, …) It is also a way to give it a second life, to pay tribute. You would be surprised with everything you can do with cardboard!

Which artist inspires you, especially in Quebec?

I would say that the artists that inspire me most are the ones that we can find on the street. We can easily find these artists as they do not necessarily try to find recognition with the work that they do. They ask for nothing, they create and make their art accessible to everyone.


I am thinking about the A’SHOP Crew, they make gigantic walls for a few years here. They inspire me with the colors that they use and because they work with many schools. I like the fact that some street artists give some of their time to educate younger generations to street art, it inspires me.


You were two to work on this project, why don’t you work alone?

I have decided to work with Aurore Danielou who is an illustrator because I like to have a good base to see another person transform the artwork again.

It is a way to personalize even more a sculpture or a decor, just like the Polysleep photobooth!

Also... we get along very well! We often collaborate together, it is a way to be even more creative, as we combine our specialties and vision.

Your biggest challenge to realise the art piece presented at the Rendez-Vous Québec Cinéma Festival?

Making a giant art sculpture is always a challenge, even more, when you have space constraints!

Therefore, I would say space, and also to make the art piece accessible to the public so that it will resist to the choc! The idea was that people could come and sit inside the art piece (as if they were swinging on the moon) and that they make the most out of it without being scared of breaking something.

The fact that it was not only a contemplative art piece was also a challenge that I wanted to take!

Why did you choose to work with Polysleep?

Straight away I was interested by this project with Polysleep as it was giving me the opportunity to give a second life to their old cardboard boxes used as their old packaging for their mattresses.

This project went along well with my recycling spirit, giving a second chance to cardboard. Finally, it is always good to help each other between local brands and artisans! 

You do not wish to unveil your identity (we promise to keep it a secret!) however can you explain to us why?

I have decided to keep my identity to myself as I do not wish for people to identify my art to the fact that I am either a man or a woman. It is also my passion for street art that kicks in as it is often anonymous, and I think that we can appreciate art without knowing who is behind it!

it might be a way to enjoy it even more, and to be even more imaginative! 😊


Thank you SMOLUK for this interview! Come and meet us to celebrate the cinema from here and come take pictures of yourself inside the “A trip to the Moon” art piece at the Cinémathèque Québécoise, 335, Boul de Maisonneuve – From February 20th – March 2nd, 2019.

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