Published 2020-08-26

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Design and research: new collaboration to clarify sustainable plastics system

When research is represented through art, it can reach new target groups. A collaboration between Mistra STEPS and designer Kajsa Willner has culminated in an outdoor exhibition, Materiality & Aggregation, to be held in September. The hope is that it will increase knowledge about, and interest in, sustainable use of plastic.

Mistra STEPS (Sustainable Plastics and Transition Pathways), a research programme led from Lund University, is working to identify ways of achieving a more sustainable plastics system by reducing the scale and variety of plastics used, boosting recovery and recycling rates, and introducing biobased and biodegradable plastics. To reach significant new target groups — including designers and architects — with a view to making plastics use more sustainable, STEPS recently tasked a designer, Kajsa Willner, with interpreting the programme’s research.

Willner has opted to convey STEPS’ efforts in a soft range of colours, to generate curiosity and allude to the stuff of dreams. Her works include a patchwork quilt comprising 117 plastic pockets containing various types of plastic granulate, to prompt questions about the number of existing forms of plastic. She has also created a sculpture composed of 28 blocks with disposable items cast into the surface.

Materiality & Aggregation is to be held at Form/Design Center in Malmö from 9 to 27 September.

Find out more about the collaboration and exhibition here.