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Poop As Art: 3 Creative Ideas For Horse Manure Recycling

Poop happens!

Flickr/David MW/CC

  • Sculpt it.

That’s what Denver artist Susan Bell decided to do with her horse’s leftover turds. She produces and sells a line of horse manure garden sculptures called Dung Bunnies.

The name is somewhat misleading, because in addition to bunnies there are ducks, pigeons, frogs, squirrels, snails and cats, all sculpted entirely of horse manure.

The artistic process: Rather than using fresh manure, which smells bad and is hard to shape, she composts the stuff for about two years–by then, it’s lost its smell. She then takes the composted manure, adds water to create a slurry, lets it dry out for a week, and then puts it in a plastic mold.

People like to put the finished sculptures in their gardens, where they decompose and become fertilizer.

Check out Susan’s website here, or try some poo-sculpting of your own! Ewww.

  • Make it into paper.

For years, paper-makers in Asia have been making paper out of elephant manure–lucky for you, horse manure is also high-fiber and works just as well. Basically, the process involves drying the manure out, cooking it for a couple hours with soda ash, straining it, and mixing it with cotton linters. This article on eHow.com guides you through the entire 20-step process.

If you’re down with the idea of dung paper but you’re not the crafty type, you can just buy it. PooPooPaper is a company that makes manure paper products, including napkins, stationary, notepads, photo albums and letterhead, in a variety of colors and styles. Shop online here.

  • Frame it.

Most people, when they look at manure, see smelly, nasty poop. Artists, however, have a depth of perception that allows them to see not just fecal matter, but texture, light, dimension. Kantilal Patel is the artist who captured the image below, titled “Cattle Manure Pies.” He sells his prints and greeting cards for the big bucks online–check it out here. Clearly, the market for artsy horse manure pics is wide open–get your foot in the door today!

Go Riding.

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