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9 Mind-Blowing Pieces of Art Made With Ridiculous Materials

#4.
Cigarette Butt Sculptures

Definitely the grossest entry on this list. Turns out there are a baffling amount of artists out there who look at old, soggy, stinky cigarette butts and see the building blocks of a fabulous sculpture. Like the dude who made this giant cigarette butt shell:

Via Beach Lovers

The shell is actually 5-feet-wide and 2-feet-tall, and considering the strict smoking laws in that state, may realistically contain every butt discarded there since the Bush administration.

Via Beach Lovers
Or half the ones in Courtney Love's sofa.

The same artist, Tom Deininger, also created this adorable rabbit:

Via Recyclart
Awwwww.

... or at least it's adorable until you find out it is made from the filthy, nicotine-filled filters of (you guessed it) discarded cigarette butts.

Via Recyclart
Just looking at this thing might give you cancer.

So, kids -- don't believe movies when they tell you that the life of an artist is all partying and getting laid. If Deininger is anything to go by, it's mostly picking up other people's cigarettes on a beach.

Meanwhile, in Missouri, a public art project combined the natural venn diagram of cigarettes and babies to produce this monstrosity:

Via Roadside America

It's a pacifier, if you can't tell. Yeah, we're not sure what that's about. We're guessing this is meant to put off children from smoking with how horrible it is. It's like something a stereotypical cartoon villain would create to use as bait for the giant baby he's trying to murder.

Via Roadside America
Or maybe something out of a Tim Burton movie.

#3.
M&M Mantelpieces

So you're hosting a fancy dinner, but then you realize you forgot to own a mantelpiece. What could you possibly use to cover your dinner table while making it look classy? Hannah Mendelsohn found the perfect alternative: ridiculous amounts of M&M's.

Via Hannah Mendelsohn
What excuse do we, as a race, have for not thinking of this sooner?

Mendelsohn was only in high school when she first started messing around with the idea that by arranging many, many M&M's on a flat surface you could get some pretty cool looking artwork. Eventually her dreams grew wild and her plan evolved into something much more ambitious, as she decided to make a coffee table covered in quasi-symmetrical geometric candy shapes.

Via Hannah Mendelsohn
"A M&Masterpiece!" - Future art history books

She never glues the candy down though (because what kind of maniac glues candy to a table?), so one bump and it could mean starting all over. Also, unlike most of the artists on this list, Mendelsohn doesn't ever have a set plan -- she just separates the different colors of M&M's, thousands in total, and wings it.

Via Hannah Mendelsohn
We think the carpet is made of Nerds

While her friends have encouraged her to get sponsorship for some commissioned artwork from Mars, Inc., so far Mendelsohn hasn't bothered to do that -- which means there is totally a gap in the market that you could be filling. We recommended Starbursts.

#2.
Drinking Straw Furniture

The one problem with having a bitchin' M&M's coffee table is that suddenly the rest of your furniture will look pretty lame in comparison. And, sadly, you can't cover a chair with chocolate candy (as we've all found out at some point in our lives). Well, that's what drinking straws are for, it turns out:

Via Webecoist.com

Artist Scott Jarvie says he was inspired by the inside of trees (we're thinking there was some sort of special mushroom growing in there), which naturally led him to create a chair made out of 10,000 straws -- plus a working lamp to match.

Via Webecoist.com
Now, he can't keep coke-head moths away from his house.

And if the thought of thousands of sharp plastic bits stabbing into your ass doesn't sound appealing to you, don't worry, there are more comfortable alternatives out there. Yes, there's more than one person in the world making chairs out of straws.

Via Webecoist.com
Well, obviously.

And if your straw table looks too bare without a straw sculpture on top of it, there is always ... whatever this is:

Via Daily Art Muse
Coral? Jimi Hendrix droppings?

Via Daily Art Muse

Those are 7,000 drinking straws wrapped in 300 yards of wool and crying out in confused shock and panic. Now dunk it in a bath tub full of tequila and let everybody drink through it!

#1.
Giant Lite-Brite Portraits

If you were a child in the 1980s you probably had a Lite-Brite. You know, that glowing box with colored pegs you could stick in little holes (or alternatively put in your mouth and choke on, which was way more fun). If you did, you might have tried to make your mom and dad a nice picture, only to have it come off like a disfigured, utterly disappointing mess.

Photos.com
Much like yourself as a child.

Well, one artist named Steve DeFrank never gave up on that dream and made a huge Lite-Brite portrait of his parents called, quite simply, "Mom and Dad."

Via NPG
Luckily for his parents it's hanging in places like the Smithsonian, and not their living room.

You probably don't remember your Lite-Brite set coming with all those shades of flesh: That's because DeFrank hand-dyed thousands of pieces himself especially for this occasion. Also, did we mention that this is actually a full-body portrait? And no, Mom and Dad are not wearing any clothes, so click at your own risk. (Includes droopy boobs and a tiny penis, all rendered out of children's toy.)

Fortunately, other artists like Joey Syta treat their Lite-Brite art with the respect it deserves, like copying an entire medieval tapestry in 1:3 size.

Via Joey Syta
Because sometimes you just have too many Lite-Brites taking up space.

Syta's website says this was done between 2007 and 2009, which probably means the unicorn alone took him like six months. Another artist named Thorin Nelson used the same materials to create this psychedelic portrait of Elvis:

Via Flickr
The favorite singer of crazy people, apparently.

But none of those compare to this massive, painstaking recreation of Leonardo's "The Last Supper," which was even submitted to the Guinness Book of Records ... and lost to this even more massive shoe.

Via Myspace Photos
You know the shoe people are going to Hell.

So now you know why you don't see kids playing with Lite-Brite anymore: It's all been used up by bored adults.

For more terrible wastes of time, check out 8 Guinness World Record Attempts That Failed (Hilariously) and The 8 Least Impressive Guinness World Records.

And stop by Linkstorm learn which Lite-Brite piece tastes the best.

And don't forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to get sexy, sexy jokes sent straight to your news feed.

Do you have an idea in mind that would make a great article? Then sign up for our writers workshop! Do you possess expert skills in image creation and manipulation? Mediocre? Even rudimentary? Are you frightened by MS Paint and simply have a funny idea? You can create an infograpic and you could be on the front page of Cracked.com tomorrow!

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