by Richard Prime
Deptford, London-based Committee, one of the firms most cleverly adopting cradle-to-cradle design practices, recently launched a new conceptual series called Plastic Relics, a project exploring the links between traditional crafts and new design approaches. Using 3D scanning and CAD design expertise, Committee designers customize vessels to fit lids sourced from 21st century plastic ephemera, like a telephone receiver and a Dyson vacuum.
Japanese company Cibone Editions realizes the designs, adding material and conceptual interplay with urushi lacquering, hand-applied by craftsmen in the Wagima province. The black lacquer bases reference lakes of oil, while the humble plastic parts suggest how a post-oil rich world might see them.
Playing on Duchamp's Readymades, the collection toes the design-sculpture line and skews eco-thinking in a new direction.
Based in Deptford, South London's creative hub, Committee's principals Harry Richardson and Clare Page are well-versed in finding beauty in other people's rubbish—scouring the local markets and thrift shops for inspiration and found objects.
Their extensive background includes designing pieces for The Rug Company, Established and Sons plus trinkets for Lladro and the beautiful Bamboo lamp for Moooi, a table lamp which comes complete with a DIY manifesto for sourcing the perfect switch fob.