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A Render Studios Documentary

Scrap to Art

ScrapFest is a repurpose-focused art festival centered around a scrap metal sculpture competition in Lansing, Michigan. With only one hour to pick out 500 pounds of metal from the scrapyard and only four weeks to transform that metal into a breathtaking sculpture, the entire process is a race against the clock.


This documentary follows three teams of artists through the 2023 event as they construct their pieces in the hopes of winning first place. Focusing on the artist’s history, motivations, creative problem-solving, hopes, fears, and personal goals, viewers of “ScrapFest” will get a never-before-seen look at everything that goes into the art that’s presented on festival weekend. But the path to success is not a straight line as the teams face unexpected obstacles on their creative journey to complete their pieces. How deep do they have to dig to get to the finish line and who will take home the coveted trophy?

As the director of this documentary, I have spent the last 13 years in awe of the creativity of these artists who transform scrap metal and redefine the boundaries of art. In our short documentary, we peel back the layers of this unique and connected subculture, shining a spotlight on the diverse voices and stories that comprise the ScrapFest community. In capturing the essence of ScrapFest artistry, we aim to spark a dialogue about sustainability, creativity, and the transformative power and connectedness of art.”

Karen Stefl

Render Studios

Awards and Recognition


Executive Producers – Mike Bass, Heather Muylle Mossing 


Director/Producer – Karen Stefl 


Directory of Photography/Editor – Scott Oberlander 


Creative Director/Graphics – Garrett Jafano 


Production Coordinator – Lilly Grace Conklin 


Featured Artists – Kelly O’Neill, Kenneth Wesner, Ivan Iler

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