Craft & Design Energy & Sustainability
Altered thrift store art:  Some personal faves

Unknown, via Reddit.

Banksy Frontier.jpg

Banksy, via Flickr user goldenticket.

It’s a simple idea: Find some bad art, whether original or a print, for a song at a thrift store, then modify it to make, if not “better art,” then at least something that’s more entertaining to look at. (Is it the same thing? Yeah, that sounds like a productive argument.)

Anyway. To quote a great sage, “there’s a lot of guys doing it, but only one guy can be the best.” That title probably goes to pseudonymous British graffiti artist Banksy. Most of the work presented below is his, but there are one or two gems from less-notables. I especially like the bland mountain landscape improved by the addition of an apocalyptic-scale katamari…


Etsy seller loudxmouse.

Banksy, via Flickr user Darrell Godliman.

supposedly banksy toxic waste.jpg

Reportedly Banksy, via Reddit.


Unknown, via Reddit.

Banksy Take a Rest.jpg

Banksy, via Flickr user poly_mnia.

Banksy Boat.jpg

Banksy, via Flickr user goldenticket.

giant robot.jpg

Unknown, via Reddit.

Banksy System Error.jpg

Banksy, via Flickr user SteeveeGee.

vacant 2 BDRM.jpg

Woodgill at Monocol’s Etsy shop.

gibbon visits the arctic.jpg

Woodgill at Monocol’s Etsy shop.

Woodgill at Monocol’s Etsy shop.

Did I miss a good one? Do you know who made the “unknown” works above? Comment below or e-mail me directly.


I am descended from 5,000 generations of tool-using primates. Also, I went to college and stuff. I am a long-time contributor to MAKE magazine and My work has also appeared in ReadyMade, c't – Magazin für Computertechnik, and The Wall Street Journal.

View more articles by Sean Michael Ragan