Free Art, If You Can Find It

Wednesday, October 17, 2012 - 3:35pm

Artist Nico Avina hides treasures around Los Angeles' Boyle Heights neighborhood for residents and fans.

There are pieces of roadside art on fences and light poles in Los Angeles' Boyle Heights neighborhood that were once discarded items -- trash left behind, then transformed by artist Nico Avina into the subjects of community scavenger hunts.

The works are "Resiclearte," or recycle art.

"In Boyle Heights, my community is my muse," said Avina, who started the "Resiclearte" project a year ago.

He takes discarded materials he finds around the neighborhood, brings the items back to his studio and creates art.

When he is done, he places it in the same place he finds it.

Using the hashtag #resiclearte, he posts images of the art and the area on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook to start a digital scavengar hunt.

"If people know their community, they know where it is on clue No. 1," said Avina. "If not, you wait for the second picture of it a couple of steps back that will let you know where in our community this piece is at."

The first person to figure out the clues gets to keep the art piece.

The project uses gaming to bring together neighbors and celebrate a neighborhood that has inspired him for years, Avina said.

"You're interacting. You are allowing the owner to have more money than just interchanging money because they are interchanging memories that they are never going to forget."

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