Artist David Hochbaum of New York City paints cityscapes and villages in unique depth of character. Bringing them more to life, he has created Village in a Can by recycling scraps of wood used to frame his work. Each whimsical cottage, crooked house, stretched out cathedral is hand assembled and carefully painted. Their match can be found in his original paintings which stem their inspiration from Pieter Bruegel’s Tower of Babel. Inside the can, eleven individual buildings pack a punch of color with lots of attention in the details. A number of the miniatures include either bird legs or an entire bird holding the structure up. This twist came from his fascination with spiritual things, and began to incorporate the Russian folk witch Baba Yaga who apparently lives in a home atop two stilts made of chicken legs. He explains the beginning of the can presentation, “Every once in a while I was getting soup and I started saving the cans. The Baba Yaga houses, they’re delicate. I thought, I’ve never seen somebody shipping a can but this will last. The object will be fine.” And so, 111 tiny houses later and a few choice cans recovered and the project with a foundation in recycling and reusing amuses us today.
Images courtesy of David Hochbaum