In order to design new exciting chairs, I never look directly at other chairs on the market but seek inspiration from other fields. Inspiration is a strange thing that you can’t really quantify; it’s something that can seep into the dark places of your brain only to come flooding back out onto a piece of paper months or years later.
Inspiration might not be derived directly from the form of design you are working in but might come from some clever packaging, a car, watch or in this case a boat made of bottles and a man on a mission, enjoy:
Born into one of the world’s richest and most powerful dynasties, banking heir and eco-warrior, David de Rothschild has serious clout to wield and he is channelling much of it into raising public awareness. In his sights are the hundreds of kilometres of plastic debris that is threatening to strangle the North Pacific Ocean.
Dubbed the ‘Great Pacific Garbage Patch’ this shameful dump of predominantly non-biodegradable plastic bottles, estimated to be twice the size of France, is rapidly increasing in volume killing millions of birds and marine mammals a year and polluting the water with toxic chemicals. ‘Bottled water has become a symbol of convenience,’ says de Rothschild. ‘The question to ask is, when did we get so thirsty?’ A committed environmentalist and adventurer, de Rothschild and his handpicked team have built a 60-foot catamaran, the Plastiki, made entirely from recycled material, essentially srPET (self-reinforced polyethylene terephthalate) a new plastic product developed in Europe similar in strength to fiberglass but made from 100% recycled plastic. Its twin hulls are moulded from 12,000 recycled two litre plastic bottles. The name Plastiki is a salute to the Kon-Tiki, a raft made from balsa wood which, in 1947, sailed 7000 kilometres across the Pacific. In July 2012 de Rothschild completed an epic three-and-a-half month journey crossing the Pacific from San Francisco to Sydney. His focus as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, but the Plastiki will also drew attention to the sinking islands of Tuvalu and the effects of mass pollution, sub-water testing of nuclear armament and coral bleaching.
‘Society’s habit of throwing everything away has to change,’ says de Rothschild. ‘I want to use the Plastiki as a platform to encourage people to start thinking of waste as a resource.’ The Plastiki expedition is aimed at transforming the iconic pin-up of mass consumption, the plastic bottle, into an effective resource that will act as a catalyst to initiate change for the world to see. De Rothschild maintains that people are growing tired of hearing that ‘the planet is really screwed’. He contends that not enough time or energy has been spent on encouraging people to find answers. ‘There’s been a major marketing faux pas,’ he declares. ‘Green is now seen as worthy, but overwhelming, exclusive, sanctimonious, gender driven and not transparent, and it’s driving people away; even those who hold the same core ideals. ‘The reality is that the list of solutions is bigger than the list of problems. The trouble is, we’re not applying them because we’ve got caught up in the clutter. We need to stop blaming and vilifying.’ The over-riding message of the Plastiki project is ‘plastic is not the enemy’. ‘It’s not the plastic that’s to blame, but the inability to understand how to use and reuse it properly,’ he says. His hope is that the legacy of the Plastiki will be a clear demonstration that solving waste issues is going to require a major re-think of how we currently use, reuse and ultimately dispose of plastics. ‘It’s a big step from problem to solution because we haven’t created the playing field to engage and encourage solutions,’ he says. ‘This issue is solvable but it’s going to require all three sectors working together.’
Taken from The Green Pages ‘The Worlds Most Interesting Environmentalists’
words by JillFraser
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