This is one way around the problem of a throwaway culture we blogged about yesterday: take things other people think of as junk, then transform them into beautiful and valuable pieces of functional art. That's what Brazilian artist Hugo Franca does...
Franca buys stumps and old trees downed during the 1960's and 1970's. He doesn't work from preconceived plans, but draws on each trunk with chalk and sculpts from there.
Franca's pieces may function as furniture, but they're priced as art. The range of $18,000-$100,000 cited in The New York Times article is only likely to climb as more people become aware of his work -- and as Franca uses up the rest of his resource, dead pequi trees.
images via The New York Times