More than 10 years ago my London friend in Muswell Hill took me around to show me these little art pieces painted on tossed chewing gum on sidewalks. So fascinating, I really loved it! She said people talked about the maker Ben Wilson, who was lying there on the street in a bright colored jacket, doing his thing. Some felt sorry for his family, she said. Now Wilson’s known as the Chewing Gum Man, who travels the world, sells his arts and works on projects.
In Rotterdam Erica Sonneveld was inspired by Wilson’s mini works and initiated Nieuwe Binnenweg Kleurt (colours) – 1.5 kilometers of Chewing Gum Street Art between the Eendrachtsplein and ‘sGravendijkwal.
With the help of many different artists like atelier Herenplaats, Graphic students, teachers and locals, they painted in 2 weeks tossed chewing gum on the sidewalks on Nieuwe Binnenweg, in front of numbers 1 -182.
Everybody made what they liked, using acrylic markers in many different styles – colourful little beauties, text, funny pictures… They’re tiny and many of them.
Enjoy the treasure hunt: take your camera and share the fun. If you use #NieuweBinnenwegKleurt, we can see your finds on Instagram. Some mini-artworks on chewing gum are vanished as people walk over them, but all stay until end of December when they will be removed.
Most chewing gum is made from polymers which are synthetic plastics that do not biodegrade. Hopefully this fun project makes you, next time you toss your gum, aim for a trash can instead of the sidewalks ;).