Houston's Beer Can House is an incredible feat of recycling - and it has finally been given its due recognition by being designated as a local landmark. The home is the work of the late John Milkovisch, who began his foray into beer décor in the 1970s by cutting and flattening saved beer cans to emulate aluminum siding. The project then grew expanded to include reclaimed beer cans and bottles all over the property, including glittering cascades of can tops and walls of inlaid recycled glass inside and out. Visitors can now visit the upcycled paradise, which is run by non-profit Orange Show Center for Visionary Art.
Milkovisch was born during the Depression, so was taught at a young age to always reuse and repurpose whatever was brought into the house. Saving old cans in the attic, he got the idea to repurpose them into aluminum siding, painstakingly cutting and flattening each can by hand. The hand crafted nature of the project inspired Milkovisch to design even more pieces throughout the home, made from the empty cans of beer he would drink in the afternoons with his wife.
Starting in 1968, Milkovisch started on the exterior of the Beer Can house, making a metal canopy that was adorned with strings of beer can tops, each piece glittering like garlands in the sunlight. Beer bottles were repurposed into walls, casting colored shadows like stained glass. Stacks of bottles were also repurposed into fences, and broken bottles became mosaic material.
The upcycled landmark welcomes visitors each weekend from 12pm – 5pm.