Well. January has been and (almost) gone, but has certainly been eventful. The world as we know it has been turned upside down, with global turmoil and global uncertainty. And it can be really easy to lose heart. To become disillusioned and to become resigned to the fact that this is the way things are going to be from now on.
But this is not the way it has to be.
Every few weeks or so, we re-do the studio window, with new ideas, new creations or new displays. In January, we came back from the break feeling that we had to do something. We had to be part of something that stood up and said No. We are all better than this.
So, perhaps because we went to watch Star Wars: Rebel One, the rebellion was very much in our minds when we came to redoing the studio window.
Resistance means Hope. Says it all really. Do not sit and despair. Stand up, join up and be hopeful.
There always has to be hope. This photo was taken on our recent beach clean for Surfers Against Sewage – a lovely shot looking out to sea over freshly cleaned beaches and the new offshore wind farm that is being developed in the channel off Brighton. We need to work together to make this world better. We need to have hope to make that happen…
It is that time of year again, and starting on 17th September, the London Design Festival is pretty much here. And each year it gets bigger, so we have looked through the line-up so far and picked out our top 5 sustainable visit tips for the festival…
Soak, Steam, Dream – Reinventing Bathing Culture with Roca:
A free photography exhibition at the Roca main gallery, Soak, Steam, Dream shows a series of architect designed bath houses from around the world which deal with different issues relating to water use and the rituals of bathing. It was this particular image above by Raumlabor in Gothenburg that caught our attention – the use of corrugated cladding and reused material was something very interesting to the norm… click here for full details.
The Circular Building – The Building Centre:
It is a very sad fact that the construction industry produces three times more waste than UK households, half of which is not recycled. Keeping materials at their highest value for longer changes this and is the main thinking behind circular economy processes – a way we should all be designing for the future. The Circular Building by Arup, The Built Environment Trust, Frener & Reifer and BAM pushes circular economy thinking at one of the largest scales – a full size building… click here for more details.
‘Waste Not Want It’ Bloomburg Launches 5th Edition:
The WNWI initiative sees some of Europe’s most dynamic designers approach upcycling in innovative ways. Commissioned by Bloomberg and curated by Arts Co, 8 new furniture installations, made almost entirely out of Bloomberg’s own waste, are displayed throughout the building. This will be a really interesting exhibition – really bringing home not only what can be made from ‘waste’ (and how desirable it can be), but how much is thrown away… click here for more details.
Ecotopia – A Sustainable Vision for a Better Future:
Ecotopia is a multi-sensory installation exploring the appeal of Utopian thinking in envisaging a sustainable future for our planet and society. It showcases the ideas of leading scientists, academics, designers and architects who are currently looking at climate change and sustainable solutions. A mixture of conceptual thinking, physical and virtual installations, Ecotopia could just be a window into our future… click here for more details.
As we hurtle into the Anthropocene, plastic is that wonderous material that has helped to shape the new age. But what does the future hold for plastic? How can we harness the usefulness of a material that can take centuries to degrade and remove it from the single use association it currently has? The Plasticity Forum brings together a great panel of experts to discuss this and far more… click here for more details.
So – our first top five of sustainable events at the London Design Festival 2016. No doubt there will be more added to the list in coming weeks, and we will bring you our top picks as they are revealed…
We love print. Ok – perhaps it is not the most eco friendly of reading choices, but there is something quite special about the whole experience that cannot be replicated online. The feel, the smell, the touch. And so, we often frequent the wonderful store Magazine Brighton, which stocks a dizzying array of short run, independent and overseas publications – always on the look out for something gorgeous. Our latest find is very special indeed – Remarkable Magazine – which has the tagline ‘Live better. Harm less.’ We were sold.
So what is Remarkable?
‘Remarkable is a digital gallery, magazine and marketplace showcasing remarkable humans doing and making remarkable things to help people live better and harm less.
We understand that our global population grows while resources shrink, but we believe the solution lies in making simple, graceful and thoughtful choices. Our mission is to inform when you ask why, inspire when you ask how and be there when you’re ready to make a remarkable change.’
And it does exactly what it says on the tin. It is a remarkable read, with inspirational features, beautiful infographics, wonderful calls to action and a very nice design. From fast fashion to Being an Unfucker (more of that in another post…), to smart cities and moving yourself more.
It is an eco magazine for the design conscious.
This may seem a rather odd statement, but in actual fact, despite the fantastic contemporary, sustainable and circular economy designs that are happening all over the globe, by many different types of designers for all sorts of reasons, quite often sustainable designs / products are segmented into a special ‘green’ edition of a design publication, or collected into an ‘eco page’.
Remarkable showcases the range and variety of design led sustainability throughout – without being preachy.
We loved it.
But, with only two issues per year, we are going to have to wait a little more time till we can get out next print fix. In the meantime, we will be keeping a close eye on their online features over here, so ask yourself – do you want to be Remarkable too?
Never talk about religion or politics. The standard dinner party etiquette that many adhere to as quite frankly, they are the largest confrontation points we could have in general conversation. Not everyone wants to discuss the finer details of China’s one child policy over a prawn cocktail. And to some point, this is fine, but we live in political times and with the EU referendum coming to a climax, we thought we would state our views. We want to remain in the EU. And we are proudly flying the flags in the window of the studio.
There are many reasons for this, but as our studio concerns are related to circular economy design and marine litter, we can safely say that all things environmental are very much in our life and work ethic. We try to do stuff not better, but best wherever we can – from where our studio energy comes from to the materials we specify on our project. We feel we are a tiny bit of a much larger whole. A global whole.
Because sometimes we think that people forget that we are all spinning on the same planet – regardless what corner we are in, the language we speak or the gods we pray to – if any. Borders can be raised, but planet Earth has her own agenda which flows, heats and cools with no thought to these barriers. From our seas to our air – everything is connected in ways we are only just starting to understand.
And the more we know, the scarier the picture is being painted. We truly believe that we can only begin to tackle the global issues of environmental degradation, extinction, waste and climate change if we work together. In fact, a huge amount of positive environmental regulation and reform has come about from the formation of the EU, let alone the peaceful foundations.
If we leave the EU, we are separating ourselves out at a time we need to be working together on so many huge issues. There is no ‘I’m alright Jack’. Sorry. You won’t be.
Take a choir. You will have an end goal in sight – perhaps a prestigious concert, but at the first rehearsal each voice and part gets some bits right and some bits wrong even if you have the same song sheet. It sounds like a shambles and you can despair, but you try again. It sounds better. You turn to your neighbour who can sing a bit you’re having trouble with and they give you some tips. Next time round, you get that bit right too. So does the person in front of you. Little by little, things come together and before long, the glorious harmonies far outweigh the bum notes. But this only comes with working together. The person that wandered off to rehearse on their own is still bumbling though the tricky passages.
So. We are voting to Remain in the EU, because we want to be better singers in the choir of Planet Earth. Come sing with us.