The Art of Recycling: The winners have been announced

The competition saw participants demonstrate their passion for the planet.

Drum roll please… Yalla – Abu Dhabi Life and Abu Dhabi Mall are delighted to announce the 2022 category winners and runners-up for The Art of Recycling competition.

An immense competition, each one of the entries has truly astounded us all with your creativity, skill and passion for the environment.

Such was the incredible response that we received from the Abu Dhabi public that Abu Dhabi Mall felt compelled to increase the allocation of vouchers from nine winners to every participant of The Art of Recycling receiving a token of appreciation – that’s 336 entries in all.

A stellar panel of judges critiqued and admired the staggering number of entries that were painstakingly shortlisted to finally select the esteemed winners and runners-up for nine categories.

The panel included Azza Al Qubaisi, Emirati artist; Tala Nassar, David Webb Museum Fellow NYUAD Art Gallery; Emma Barber, Managing Director of DGRADE; and James Matthews, DCT – Abu Dhabi at Manarat Al Saadiyat as the Education Workshop Manager, all of whom Yalla – Abu Dhabi Life and Abu Dhabi Mall wish to thank as they had an incredibly difficult time in choosing our winners from quite simply an astounding array of recycled artwork.


All artwork entries were judged using five strict criteria:

  • How genuine the materials used were (For example, not shop bought material)
  • Variety of recycled materials used
  • The concept and design that the artworks tried to portray using such material
  • The techniques used to execute the recycled materials into artwork
  • Artistic finish

Yalla – Abu Dhabi Life and Abu Dhabi Mall offers their utmost gratitude to all those who participated in The Art of Recycling and to the judges who were faced with the difficult task  of choosing the winners. We look forward to seeing you all again for our next competition which will be revealed over the coming months so stay tuned to Yalla UAE, our Facebook page and Yalla – Abu Dhabi Life Instagram.

So let us celebrate the creativity, work and genius behind the incredible champion artworks that successfully captured the true meaning behind The Art of Recycling.






The art of recycling

Winner: Odyssey Nursery – Mushrif
Title: The Mangrove

“Natural resources are something we hold close to our hearts here at the Odyssey Nursery, Mushrif. We took part in The Art of Recycling competition to increase awareness of the importance of recycling and its impact on the environment and the children’s future.”






The art of recycling

Winner: Sunrise International School
Title: Dancing Lady

“My passion is dancing so I wanted to create a piece that showed the world my love of dance. The dancing lady is composed of pistachio shells used to create the ruffles of the skirt alongside newspaper and aluminium.”  




The art of recycling

Winner: Abdulla bin Otaiba School
Title: Hear Me Roar!

“The king of the jungle, the lion, is one of the world’s most iconic animals and symbolises the beauty of nature. Using paper bag handles, paper, cardboard, bottle lids, tin cans and old buttons we created a mighty roaring lion.” 


The art of recycling

Runner-up: Summit International School
Title: Arabian Oryx

“I chose an Arabian Oryx to represent and show how the UAE is developing while preserving native animals. They are still and always will be a part of the UAE, so I wanted to celebrate the animal by making an Arabian Oryx with papier-mâiché.




The art of recycling

Winner: Brighton College Abu Dhabi
Title: Gold Hive

“I had fun making this beehive and researching different ways to recycle materials to construct this project. During this time, I learned that you can build many things using the stuff you are about to throw away.”



The art of recycling

Runner-up: Mohammed Bin Rashid Center for Special Education
Title: UAE AirShip

“Ready to take to the skies, the ship was created using shredded paper and then mounted on a balloon with glue. Once set, the balloon was removed and decorated with paint. The basket was created from an old tissue box and painted in the colours of the UAE.” 




The art of recycling

Winner: Tasneem Ahmed Swai – Abu Dhabi University
Title: A Cozy Living Room

“Using the knowledge that I have garnered from my Interior Design course at Abu Dhabi University, I designed a living room model before turning the creation into a reality.” 






The art of recycling

Winner: Vera Antsimonava
Title: Exploring the Ocean

To explore marine life, people need a special helmet to dive. I know that lots of paper and plastic we use once and throw it in a bin. I prepared this part of the costume for a science day at school and wanted to show that the ocean can be cleaner if we recycle and create some art objects or produce new stuff.” 


The art of recycling

Runner-up: Helena Lucia Hernandez
Title: Gato Alebrije

“Alebrijes are folk artworks beloved in Mexico that depict fantastic animals in colorful, vibrant sculptures. They often play the part of spirit guides helping heroes in traditional tales. Some people give Alebrijes as thoughtful gifts as they are believed to take the role of guardians of the house.”


The art of recycling

Runner-up: Amna Al Dhanhani
Title: The Garden of Wonder

“Inspiring the community that the planting of one tree or flower can make a huge difference to the environment, the garden is made up of popsicle sticks with the flowers created using plastic spoons with the handles removed, drinking straws attached to a barbeque stick and water bottle.”


10-15 YEARS


The art of recycling

Winner: Harishwar Sakthivel
Title: The White Peacock

“I absolutely adore birds and with the national bird of India being the white peacock, I was inspired to create this beautiful animal using soda cans, plastic cans, chips packets and an iron rod.”   


The art of recycling

Runner-up: Aaron Robert Duncan
Title: Iron Man Mark 3 Helmet

“This Iron Man Mark 3 superhero helmet is protective gear worn during life-saving activities. The full gold-face removable front is attached with velcro to enable the wearer’s friendly face to be seen if needed.” 


The art of recycling

Runner-up: Maisie Jae Johnson
Title: Save Our Seas

“I found plastic bottles on the beach around Saadiyat Island where I live and where turtles lay their eggs. If we keep polluting the beaches and the sea, they won’t come anymore. So, I thought making a turtle, called Bottles the Turtle, out of plastic bottles would send a strong message to everyone.” 


16-18 YEARS


The art of recycling

Winner: Romy Khayat
Title: Crobstersquimpfish

“I created the Crobstersquimpfish to recognise the beauty and variety of endangered sea creatures that are put at risk due to the trash that is discarded in the ocean. After going to the fish market and studying different types of creatures under the sea, and with some trash that I found around the ocean, I created a new species of sea creature inspired by the spiky back of a crab, the back of a lobster, the squiggly arms of a squid, the limbs of a shrimp, and the tail of a fish.”  


The art of recycling

Runner up: Alyazia Al Ameri
Title: A Trio of Purple Captivation

“The innovation uses old CDs and magazines. The CDs were split to get the purple side to make the flower and the birds. Magazines were rolled to assemble the cages and the bouquet is made from the purple egg carton.” 


The art of recycling

Runner-up: Khushi Saxena
Title: Leveled Flowers

“I made this model after thinking about the leveled or raised flower beds. They are often more productive than beds in the ground because the soil is less compacted, has better drainage, and warms earlier in the spring, meaning that plants will start to grow earlier in the season.” 




The art of recycling

Winner: Martin Holtz Javier

“They call him the recycler and he rides a four wheel horse. He goes around taking care of garbage. He takes wasted materials and recycles them and makes the surrounding areas clean.”  


The art of recycling

Runner-up: Ghazala Parveen
Title: The House

“A beautiful house, complete with pathway, landscaping, bird feeder, play things, furniture, birds and bird nest to create a home from home.”  


The art of recycling

Runner-up: Rose Vee Angoluan
Title: The Space Dreamer

“The art shows the contrast of light and dark to give depth to the artwork. The dark area of outer space creates an atmosphere perspective to emphasize the focal point of the astronaut. The artwork expresses infinite freedom and encourages us to see the beauty of universe.” 


Congratulations to all our all winners and runners-up who will be contacted directly to receive their prize.

Image source Yalla – Abu Dhabi Life and Canva


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