how recycled metal art is made

In the past few years, we have expanded our unique inventory at Kalifano to include a slew of one-of-a-kind metal sculptures that have been created using all recycled parts from cars and motorcycles. These sculptures, which are built in a studio in Indonesia, have added an exciting touch to our company, and visitors can look forward to seeing different ones on display every time they visit our stores! 

These sculptures are very intricate, so how do they go from piles of old parts to pieces of magnificent art? 

Step 1: Gathering Recycled Metals and Automotive Parts

Something that is quite special about our sculptures is that all the parts are recycled and have been sourced from local Indonesian junkyards. Because of that, the actual process of making these sculptures is environmentally friendly and leaves a very small carbon footprint. We love knowing that all of these old parts are given a new purpose as part of a piece of art, and our guests love identifying old spark plugs, brake pads, and hubcaps disguised throughout the different pieces. 

Step 2: Welding

After all of the necessary parts have been gathered and cleaned, the welding process begins. We have a team of 15 experienced welders who follow detailed design outlines for roughly four to six months before they come up with the finished product. Each of our extra-large sculptures has more than 1,000 welds and contains no less than 600 different recycled parts. One fun fact about the sculptures is that we build them as different pieces and put them together at the end. So, one set of welders could be working on a pair of legs, while someone else in another part of the studio could be working on the head of the same sculpture! 

Step 3: Painting

Once the sculptures have been welded together, they are polished and painted to give them their final details. Some pieces are painted with bright colors or special details like flames or “battle wounds,” depending on the story line behind that particular piece. However, sometimes the artists choose to forego using color and instead paint them in a way that accentuates their classic shiny, gray metallic color. Once the sculptures are painted, they are coated with a special sealant, similar to the ones used on the outside of cars to keep the paint job intact. Once this process is complete, the sculptures are ready to hit the store and find a new home! 

Step 4: The Sculptures Get a New Home

The recycled metal sculptures now have to make the journey from Indonesia to Las Vegas, and it is from here that they will find their forever homes. We display the sculptures in our Las Vegas stores, where we have a wonderfully diverse clientele base for them. Once a guest decides which piece they want, that specific piece is then removed from our sales floor and carefully wrapped up and shipped to them. Our guests love knowing that they are getting a one-of-a-kind piece of art, and we love knowing that our sculptures have found homes in many different businesses, man caves and home theaters all across the world.    

Jessica Magallon is a Southern California native, growing up in Glendale, CA with her parents and 2 brothers. Growing up, Jessica was very involved in sports, playing soccer from age 4 until her second year in college. She moved to Las Vegas in 2014 to finish pursuing a Bachelors of Science in Business Management, and decided after graduation in 2017 to stay permanently and trade in her California roots for a Las Vegas life. She loves live music and dancing, and is on a personal mission to find the best tacos Las Vegas has to offer! Jessica has been with Kalifano since early 2017 and enjoys going to the warehouse to hand pick items to be sold inside our stores. Some of her favorite Kalifano items for sale (and that are part of her personal collection) include our hand-made Gemstone globes, our beautiful blue Celestite Geodes and our Native American Turquoise jewelry. She can be found most nights at Kalifano’s Forum Shops location- feel free to stop in and say Hi!

September 28, 2019 — Jessica Magallon

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