The Design Transfigured/Waste Reimagined exhibition at the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art features projects that repurpose waste products. Here are eight highlights including vases sculpted from PVC pipes.
The exhibit comprises over 30 projects that reimagine discarded materials and byproducts – sourced from manufacturing, agriculture, food and human waste – including building materials, home furnishings and fashion accessories.
“What we are seeing is designers on a global scale are looking at waste materials and waste streams and seeing them not as something to turn our backs on, but really thinking of them as a quarry for future work,” curator Judith Hoos Fox told Dezeen.
Many of the projects are created by recent graduates or university-led initiatives. They are intended to explore more socially and environmentally responsible means of production and product design in response to climate change.
“We really hope that this is part of a ‘sea change’,” Hoos Fox added, “that visitors will start seeing in the waste that surrounds us possibilities and the larger view is an awareness of the fragility of the world, the environment in which we live.”
“Designers are real players in working in this situation, and offering alternatives.”
Hoos Fox and Ginger Duggan, of C2-Curatorsquared, curated the exhibition for the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art alongside the museum’s assistant curator Lauren O’Connell. The exhibition was first shown at the Maria & Alberto de la Cruz Art Gallery at Georgetown University.
In addition to all of the objects, the display stands are also made from recycled materials. Eindhoven studio Dutch Invertuals created the fibreboard displays using cotton and wool cut-offs from textile manufacturer Kvadrat.
“The holders of the exhibition itself are the content of the exhibition and we really like that weaving together of form and content,” Hoos Fox said.
Design Transfigured/Waste Reimagined will be on exhibition at the SMoCA until 17 May 2020.
Read on for eight designs featured in the exhibition:
Standing Textiles by Fransje Fransje Gimbrère
Fransje Gimbrère has used bamboo, linen or cotton, and synthetic yarns made from recycled plastic bottles to create woven sculptural volumes. The colourful pieces are intended to demonstrate the textile’s alternative potential as a building material, according to the Dutch designer.
Suelo Orfebre vessels by Simón Ballen Botero
Simón Ballen Botero’s Suelo Orfebre uses excess mineral waste from gold mining in Colombia and turns it into small containers. He worked with a local mining community to reuse the byproduct that would otherwise go to waste.
PVC Handblown Vessels by Kodai Iwamoto
Bulbous vessels from Japanese designer Kodai Iwamoto convert ubiquitous PVC piping into vases with rigid lines. To craft the pieces, Iwamoto moulds the plastic using a technique similar to glass blowing.
Smog Free Ring by Studio Roosegaarde
Dutch design practice Studio Roosegaarde, known for its series of smog-eating towers, created this ring made from compressed smog particles collected from the towers.
Industrial Craft by Charlotte Kidger
British designer Charlotte Kidger has turned polyurethane foam into multi-coloured pieces of furniture. The collection, which includes tables, stools and vases, repurposes the by-product from computer numerical control (CNC) fabrication.
Red Mud by Studio ThusThat (formerly Residue Enabled Design)
This series of vases, bowl, kettles and plates, conceived by a team of graduates from London’s Royal College of Art and Imperial College, comprises bauxite residue, a waste produced from refining alumina.
Each of the piece’s forms is influenced by the architecture of the factories that are the source of bauxite residue, with the vases referencing towering smokestacks.
High Heel Shoes by Laura Strambi
Italian designer Laura Strambi has created high heel shoes from the fibre of pineapple leaves.
The material called Piñatex, is a natural byproduct from the tropical fruit that would otherwise go unused. The green fibre product is used to cover the square heels and three straps of Strambi’s open-toed sandals.
Coat from Mexico Collection by Liselore Frowijn
Dutch designer Liselore Frowijn also created a reflective, silver jacket that uses the pineapple leaf textile. It as initially developed by Carmen Hijosa following her in the work and research in the Philippines in the 1990s.
Photography is courtesy of Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art.
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