Jonas (Jones Francisco de Camargo)’s life has been a great adventure. “My father was known as Zé Ferrinho and used to work in a garage in Santos (SP), where I was born in 1977. Since I was a child I accompanied him on his trips around the southern coast of Brazil. On the beach, he used to make candles using the melted candle wax people had lit on the beach. I used to collect cans, which he used to make moulds for the candles. We were always coming and going, on foot, on bicycle, hitchhiking. We lived on beaches in Paraná, Rio de Janeiro, Santos and finally in Praia Grande (SP). And once we went from Mato Grosso to Parati riding on a wooden kart!” Jonas remembers when one day he saw a mini motorcycle made of coiled wire. “I decided I was going to make one, but instead of thin wire I used tin from cans and thick wire. I had to make my own tools, using bits from an umbrella.” He says he learned a lot from his father who enjoyed making toy cars and aeroplanes. “My father used to sell everything we made, or swap it for food, cigarettes or drinks. But I never thought I would one day make a living from tin toys. For a while I thought of trying to get a job in a garage, but I always felt like making things. When I lived with my father we didn’t have a roof over our heads because he enjoyed looking at the sky. Now I have my own family, and I have a proper house, and a place to work.” Jonas knows that his life depends on cans and wires. “There are also other materials that I sometimes come across that I can use. When I first started my work was very limited. Now I know I can make anything I want. I’ve made pieces that can move, and sometimes I use engines and moving parts of things people have thrown away. I enjoy making figurines like the Samurai and Don Quixote.”
His pieces can be found in the shop O Design Animado, in the Vila Madalena neighbourhood, in São Paulo (SP).
(Folkloric character)
Tin and wire, 20 cm tall
Tin and wire, 20 cm tall.
Private collection
Wire, tin and mixed materials, 18 cm tall.
Guaraciaba Grenci collection, Mongaguá, SP
Tin and wire, 10 cm tall.
Private collection
Wire, tin and mixed materials, 23 cm tall.
Private collection
São Paulo
 Embu das Artes
Taboão de Serra
São Luís do Paraitinga
Center West
Index and Addresses
Book's cover
Published by
Proposta Editorial

(55 11) 3814 3536