Recycled junk murals: Raccoon

Photos: Arturo Bordalo

Portuguese street artist Bordalo II (also known as Arturo Bordalo) takes crumpled bumpers, scorched garbage cans and old rubber tires and transforms them into 3-D mural portraits of animals, like the raccoon above.

Many of the materials for his vibrant "Big Trash Animals" are scavenged from abandoned factories and other urban wastelands, but some materials are obtained from corporate recycling programs.

Recycled junk murals: Toucan

By putting a literal face on our growing mountains of waste, Bordalo paints a powerful indictment of our world's insidious throw-away culture, which is caused by economic policies that encourage the excessive overproduction and overconsumption of disposable goods, like plastic bags, fast fashion and electronic gadgets that are prone to rapid obsolescence.

"The idea is to depict nature itself — in this case, animals — out of materials that are responsible for its destruction," Bordalo writes.

Continue below to see more of these 3-D junk murals, and be sure to follow Bordalo on Facebook and Instagram to keep up with his latest work.

Recycled junk murals: Owls
Recycled junk murals: Bunny
Recycled junk murals: Hummingbird
Recycled junk murals: Fishies
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Catie Leary is a photo editor at Mother Nature Network. Follow her on Twitter and Google+.

Catie Leary ( @catieleary ) writes about science, travel, animals and the arts.

One world's trash is another man's street art
By putting a literal face on our growing mountains of waste, this street artist is bringing attention to our insidious throw-away culture.