Time to Exit the Waste Age
From the Stone Age to the Bronze Age to the Iron Age, materials have defined the ages, now it seems we have entered the ‘Waste Age’ – an era of mass production and over consumption. As our global leaders discuss Climate Change policies at the COP26 Conference (1st -12th November 2021) in Glasgow, the Design Museum in London has opened a compelling exhibition ‘Waste Age: What Can Design Do?’
By now we all know the stats that reveal the shocking extent of our current day waste:
- Each year, a third of all food produced globally for human consumption goes to waste.
- In Europe 87% of textiles end up in landfill or incinerators.
- In 2019 50 million metric tons of electronic waste was produced globally.
- And each year, 8 million tonnes of plastic leak into the ocean, that equals one garbage truck full every minute.
This cannot go on, and for some pioneering designers the answer lies all around us. Our waste can be reused and repurposed and this latest exhibition at the Design Museum in South Kensington, London, showcases design innovation by using waste materials. From fashion to furniture designers have reused the likes of discarded plastics, electronics, corn husks, fruit peel, algae and more. Designers on show include the likes of Formafantasma, Stella McCartney, The Ellen MacArthur Foundation, Lacaton & Vassal, Fernando Laposse, Bethany Williams, Phoebe English and Natsai Audrey Chieza.
Gemma Curtin, Curator, comments: “We must face the problem of waste – we can no longer ignore what happens to things when we get rid of them. Instead of thinking of objects as things that have an end life, they can have many lives. This is not just an exhibition it is a campaign, and we all have an active part in our future.”
It is blatantly obvious we have no time to waste!
Waste Age: What Can Design Do? is on until 20th February 2022. The Design Museum, 224-238 Kensington High Street, London W8 6AG.
Visit: https://designmuseum.org/exhibitions/waste-age-what-can-design-do for further information and to gain insight into ways that you can reduce what you waste.