How do you make cardboard beautiful? When I first became a design student, our professor charged us with this task. It seems Giles Oldershaw has found an answer to that question in his set of Cardboard Relief Portraits. These exquisite portraits have transformed a mundane material and consequently revealed its potential. An artist makes use of a material in a way that goes beyond the conventional. It is as if the material has a voice and the artist is meant to listen. In this case, cardboard wants to be more than packaging material, and Giles Oldershaw listened and produced these economically beautiful pieces of art.

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Courtesy of Giles Oldershaw

The layers in a sheet of cardboard have always intrigued me, and Oldershaw really peels them away beautifully.

Arch2o-Giles Oldershaw  (18)

Courtesy of Giles Oldershaw

His pieces mainly depict pop icons, like movie stars or celebrities, and each piece is sold separately.

Arch2o-Giles Oldershaw  (16)

Courtesy of Giles Oldershaw

Apart from his skillfulness in exposing the beauty in such an unexpected material, what makes his pieces even more enjoyable is this cleverly positioned phrase: ‘PLEASE RECYCLE’ in a few of the portraits.

By Aiysha Alsane

Courtesy of Giles Oldershaw

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