Hot on the heels of a welter of reality entertainment shows, Channel 4 has launched the Great Bin Art Challenge. A C4 spokesperson explained the thinking behind the new show, saying ‘We’ve looked at regional and national trends and there seems to lots of bins that have house numbers displayed in interesting and original styles. People are moving away from the usual emulsion paint daub and progressing to some great artistic expressions. With the success of baking shows, pottery shows and sewing shows, wheelie bins could be the latest frontier in celebrating individual creativity before the nation.’
The channel denied accusations that they were desperate for ideas, and that their latest idea belonged in the bin, rather than putting the bin itself up on the screen.
‘We have filmed some episodes across the country and they show a fascinating range of artistic endeavour. In Belfast, the bins have their ‘gable end’ painted to show local heroes with the house number barely prominent. Whereas in Liverpool, most bins end up being painted red or blue depending on the choice of football team and the house number resembles the font on the football shirt. In Newcastle, the bins feature mostly monochrome numbers and across many parts of Wales, the bins are painted in the traditional red and green motifs.’
Professor of Modern Culure, Sian Hughes who will be a judge in the Great Bin Art Challenge, was similarly excited about the new show, saying ‘Bins have come a long way if you trace their social and cultural history. Today, they are no longer waste receptacles but a means of expressing creativity in local contexts.’
The C4 spokesperson also confirmed that each week a Bin Artist will be voted off in the normal style of a challenge show. There is a novelty aspect to this, though, as the Binned Off contestant is wheeled away in a refuse bin by the other contestants and then crushed to death in the back of a dustcart.