The concept of upcycling emerged about a decade ago, mainly in the field of furniture design, as something alternative in its rationale and presentation. Nowadays things have changed. The study and implementation of sustainability policies dominate the planning strategies of states, companies, universities, research centres and other institutions. Obviously, the use of what already exists can also assume a poetic character.

In the spirit, but not in the aesthetic of Giovanni Battista Piranesi’s “I Grotteschi”, “Waste not Want not” presented the spectator with a series of objects or composite features made from the material “waste” of its sponsors. We looked into a narrative that explains why something is deemed “waste” and its overall carbon footprint.

The lighting design for Waste not Want not was based on the idea of elevating the objects and materials on display into art pieces in a gallery-like setup. The idea was to use light to create contrast between these repurposed items and materials and the theatrical setting of the installation. Lighting was used to emphasize certain properties of the materials and objects, such as texture or color, to create a certain atmosphere that could help to drive the narrative of the installation and to promote a lighting design culture based on sustainability and impact awareness.

A series of custom luminaires were also designed purely out of waste material, like aluminium profile cutoffs, glass tubes excess & marble rejects. A large spiral structure with suspended angled laminated wood cut-off tiles was designed to provide a low level general lighting. Using the white surface of the tiles as reflectors, an uninteresting material was now part of a feature element. A short light show every hour gave life to each individual piece, enhancing the emersive experience and the ‘sculpute gallery’ feeling of the installation.

The visitor saw the value and the potential inherent in the materials that we now consider to be “waste”, by presenting them as “Good Art”, decorated with dynamic theatrical lighting to activate the various elements of the exhibition. Elevated in spirit, the object has one last story to tell about itself and about how we can give it a new purpose.

Waste material providers and fabricators:

Eva Papadopoulou
Konstantinidis Sa
Machos Glass
Qoop Soulis Nikos

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Lighting Designer Partners

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