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Xreart Studio - Turning old masterpieces into new ones

By Tom Richmond
Wed 13 Jul 2022

When Xreart Studio photographer Zach accidentally dropped his iPhone from height at an event back in 2019, it ended up being the catalyst for the company to turn its attention from photography to creating works of art using broken, disassembled gadgets. Xreart now specialises in transforming pre-loved smartphones, smartwatches and handheld game consoles into artistic conversation starters for your office, studio or man cave.

When Zach couldn’t bring himself to discard his broken iPhone, he was inspired to disassemble it and put it in a frame after seeing a forum post of someone deciding to showcase their unused iPhone in a display case.

Three years later, and 2022 has been a busy year so far for Xreart with the launch of their PSP frames back in March, followed by its Gameboy, Nokia and Samsung frames hitting the market a month after.

The start-up company also has plans to expand its product range with framed crypto art, as well as jewellery and phone cases made from electrical components to be released before the end of the year.

In a world where technology is evolving so quickly, and there are limited uses for pre-loved gadgets, it’s refreshing to see a company with an innovative way to repurpose them so they can be appreciated for years to come. 

We received the innards of an iPhone 4, displayed intricately within a large black frame. Display labels inform you of each component, from the ring/silencer switch to the battery and the 3.5-inch, 325PPI display screen. There is also information on the display, such as the device’s launch date and the date it was eventually discontinued. 

This particular model is priced at USD$149 (approx. NZD$240), although at the time of writing, it’s available with a USD$10 discount. It’s worth noting that this is one of the cheaper products, with the games consoles and different iPhone frames coming with more premium price tags.

Everything is well assembled onto a white cardboard background, and it all looks fantastic displayed within the ebony wooden frame. Unfortunately, a layer of protective film covers the plexiglass, and, annoyingly, this required me to take apart the frame to fully remove it. This did, however, allow me to look at the iPhone components in more detail, and I noticed that there were barely any signs of usage on the components in our example - suggesting that this particular iPhone 4 once had a very careful owner.

I really do see the appeal of Xreart’s products - they would make a great gift, and the feeling of nostalgia when looking at one is only going to increase as technology continues to advance and the years roll on. 

The products are simple, modern and feel durable enough to stand the test of time. The price point might be a little on the high side, but I think many will look past that as they wish to kit out their space. For anyone feeling adventurous, Xreart offers free downloads of its various templates as well as guides on how to disassemble the various devices plus frames, so the high price tag can be reduced significantly if you’re willing to go the DIY route.

Either way, it’s awesome to be able to appreciate significant gadgets years after they were cutting edge.

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