Transforming musical instruments into works of art.

Upcycling is a trend that sees the creative reuse of products or materials as something entirely new. An initiative called Yamaha Cares Upcycle, part of the company’s employee-led Yamaha Cares program, is taking the lead by enabling musical instruments that are no longer fit for playing to be transformed into canvases for creative expression.

Yamaha recently donated more than 200 slightly blemished guitars, cellos and violins to four local not-for profit organizations: Able ARTS Work, Anaheim Elementary School District, Boys & Girls Club of Buena Park, and KatrinaKures/Children’s Hospital of Orange County. The organizations then collaborated with students, teachers, families, employees and local artists to turn the instruments into works of art. As shown in these illustrations, some chose to paint scenes on the front or back of the instruments, while others chose to repurpose them entirely into useful or decorative items such as lamps, spice racks and bird feeders.

Carlos Arredondo 607 X 1160

Katrina Kures Crop 607 X 1160

Maria Arroyo Galaviz Crop 610 X 1160

EPI 610 X1160

Lamp 607 X 1160

CHOC Guitar 607 X 1160

Yamaha Cares Upcycle provides an innovative way for organizations to raise funds for their art and music programs. In addition, it reduces the amount of waste that ends up being sent to a land fill.

An exhibition of upcycled Yamaha instruments was recently held at the Able ARTS Work Gallery at 6420 E. Pacific Coast Highway in Long Beach. The students of Able ARTS Work received a 50 percent commission on pieces sold, with the other 50 percent supporting their “A Home of Our Own” campaign, which aims to purchase a permanent building and gallery for its adult day program for adults with disabilities. Artwork from the other three organizations received 100 percent of sale proceeds, with funds destined to enhance music programs and fund research for Type 1 Diabetes.

For more information about Yamaha Cares Upcycle, be sure to check out this video featuring artist Chariya Bissonette.

Photographs courtesy of Able ARTS Work, Anaheim Elementary School District, Boys & Girls Club of Buena Park, and KatrinaKures/Children’s Hospital of Orange County.


To learn more about the organizations involved, please visit:

Able ARTS Work Gallery: https://www.ableartswork.org/
Anaheim Elementary School District: https://anaheimelementary.org/
Boys & Girls Club of Buena Park: https://theplaceforkids.org/
KatrinaKures / Children’s Hospital of Orange County: https://for.choc.org/KatrinaKures2021

Click here for more information about the Yamaha Cares Program and to apply for a grant, product donation or upcycled instruments for your school or non-profit program.

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