Two examples of Chinese material design

Two Chinese designers use waste materials, namely recycled paper and demolition waste, to create (urban) furniture.

Paper Table
Designer Li Xiao-Ming of Archstudio used recycled paper pulp and maple wood to create a table with a 3D curved surface. The waste paper is turned into pulp, before it goes through a solidification treatment, keeping its soft touch. The pulp is used to form the table top, which has a curved surface, especially designed to invite to take a nap.

Similarly, Li created bricks out of paper pulp, using a solidification method and moulding.

Sealing is a project by Hu Quanchun of V Studio in which demolition waste is cast in cement to make cubes that can be used as sitting furniture.

Currently, many shanty towns are being demolished to be replaced by modern cities. Families in the shanty towns built their own homes, choosing their own building materials and decoration according to their preferences and economic status. Therefore, the building debris after demolition is different for each case. To preserve the memory of the old city and the families, Hu decided to create a series of artworks.

First, the building material is collected. The waste material is then put in a cube-shapes mould and cement is added. By cutting each side of the cubes, the internal material shows up. Finally, the cube is inscribed with the exact location of the debris and the owners’ names. The cubes, with a size of 45 x 45 x 45 cm or 75 x 75 x 75 cm, can be used as public tables and chairs.

Sealing is an on-going art project that will last until all shanty towns are fully demolished, according to Hu.

Photos: V Studio/Changde Feng Niao / Archstudio