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What you need to know about COVID-19: August 7, 2020
A Brooklyn resident is literally transforming one man’s trash into another man’s treasure.
Santos Treminio, originally from Nicaragua, has been taking discarded tires and transforming them into functional works of art since December.
In just a few short months, he’s made multiple planters, seats and swings. His expertise in working with the rubbery material grows by the day.
Treminio, who lives in Brooklyn with his partner Nancy Miller, grins when he shows off his latest endeavour.
Lining the deck are rubber planters, stitched together with wire, filled with lilies on the cusp of blooming.
Next to the planters are chairs, also derived from rubber. The seat cushions are woven tire scraps.
“It’s super neat. I never thought of a tire chair,” said Miller.
He takes tire swings to a whole new level as well.
“He made the swing years back, so he had already been working with tires a bit. But this is just totally different. It’s almost like art.”
Long straps of rubber hang from a tree in the yard, next to circular rubber discs — all ready for when Treminio sits down to create. Treminio puts the entire tire to use.
“He uses every bit that’s left over,” she said.
Miller’s six nieces love to visit and play on the gigantic swing in their yard. And people who are just starting to hear about Treminio’s work are quite supportive of his upcycling pursuit.
“People like them. They say it’s a great idea to do something with the tires,” said Miller.
“It keeps them out of the landfill.”
When Treminio isn’t gardening — he’s been known to grow some pretty giant vegetables — he can often be found tinkering with old tires. It takes about three hours, without a break, to construct a planter.
The hardest part, Treminio says, is cutting through the middle section of the tire. He uses a jigsaw.
“There’s a lot of wire. There’s like hardly anything that will cut through,” Miller said, helping translate as Treminio explains the process in Spanish.
As Treminio gets more and more comfortable working with the material, he’s exploring new ways to design outdoor furniture and planters. A few of his latest planters have shapes incorporated into their design; and he mentioned he’s looking forward to designing planters in the shape of animals in the future.
Miller said the tire art, which can be painted if people feel so inclined, doesn’t stain clothing as all the tires are washed beforehand.
Tire chairs can accommodate at least 200-pounds comfortably and cost $80 each. Tire swings cost $30 each, or two for $50, and remain sturdy with a weight of 200-plus pounds sitting on them. Planters cost the same and come in a variety of shapes and styles.
Miller said they just launched a Facebook page to help get the word out about Treminio’s recycled tire art.
Instead of people tossing tires on the side of the road, or allowing them to sit in the yard to become mosquito breeding grounds, the couple say they would like people to drop them off for Treminio to work on. Anyone wishing to do so can contact Miller and Treminio on Facebook.
To check out Treminio’s tire work, visit his Facebook page.