It's a classic example of one man's trash being another man's treasure. Artist Topher Désprés found opportunity in the debris that Hurricane Sandy left behind.
As the clean-up began, Désprés began re purposing trees downed by the storm and carving them into household items like bowls and vases. The response to this project has been "amazing," Désprés told The Cycle hosts. With over 19,000 trees downed from the storm, he's had more than enough materials to work with. But Désprés' project has attracted some notable partnership attention as well. He has teamed up with the New York Restoration Project--founded by actress and singer Bette Midler--giving 20% of his profits back to the organization to help it continue its work. NYRP's "primary function is to restore community spaces in the New York City area," Désprés explained, "so it could be gardens, it could be parks, it could be trails. My specific work with them is going to parks."
Désprés' work can be found and ordered online at www.topherdespres.com and, starting in early March, at Williams-Sonoma, both online and in stores. To donate to the New York Restoration Project, you can visit their website.