Álvaro Catalán de Ocón is an award winning Spanish designer from P.E.T. Lighting, who will discuss his international project that transforms waste plastic into beautiful, useable objects.
in 2011, aÁlvaro Catalán de Ocón travelled to South America where he took part in a project led by Hélène le Drogou, psychologist and activist who was concerned with the plastic waste contaminating the Colombian Amazon. Currently large amounts of PET bottles are washed into the earth’s body of waters by tropical rains – the discarded material pulled into the rivers, floating out into the Pacific Ocean where over time it has accumulated into an immense island, spanning larger than the area of Spain, which today is known as the ‘seventh continent‘.
His response? Engaging the local community to turn the containers for liquids into ceiling lamps. With the help of the Asociación Artisanías de Colombia (an organization dedicated to the preservation of Colombian crafts), Alvaro collaborated with two distinct groups of artisans from the Cauca region who had been displaced by guerilla war to Bogota. Together they have been giving new life and shape to the PET bottle since 2012, which gave rise to PETlamp.org.
Thursday August 13 6.00pm.
Red Centre Lecture Theatre GOO1
Text and photograph: Designboom