The Design Institute of Australia (SA Branch) celebrated World Industrial Design Day last week by launching an exhibition exploring recycled materials for coat hangers.
The exhibition “Hung Out to Dry,” curated by industrial design graduate Shane Haddy and DIA (SA branch) co-president Andrew Whittaker, asked designers across South Australia to develop a coat hanger made of recycled materials.
Recycled “goon sacks”, old computer PCBs and even Chinese eating utensils were some of the materials used to address the brief.
University of South Australia lecturer Dan McLean reprised the computer PCB to create a coat hanger. Noting the nature of electronic waste placed on kerbside hard rubbish, he hopes his design will “breathe some life back in to things.”
“Amongst the couches on the footbath are these computers that look sad but probably still work,” he said.
“There’s gold, mercury and all these precious minerals that have an untimely end.”
Andrew Whittaker’s goon-sack creation reused the foil bag from a wine decanter, or “goon sack” as more commonly known. Cutting and resealing the profile of the coat hanger in the foil with a heated brass roller, the product reduces waste from landfill and ensures clothes maintain shape.
Industrial designer Andrew Rogers’ Chinese eating utensils product explores the idea of “twice-recycled” systems and addressed the critical human needs of clothing for warmth and food for survival. Once a garment was put on, the coat hanger could be dismantled to use for eating. The user could then wash the chopsticks and spoons once used and rehang the garment after it had been washed.
The issue of recyclability has come to the forefront in South Australia with a recent report revealing 70.4 per cent of all waste generated in the state was diverted from landfill in the 08/09 financial year. Over 13,700 tonnes of plastics were recovered for recycling, 38 per cent of which were plastic bottles.
South Australia trails the Australian Capital Territory for the best recycling rates in the country.
“Hung out to dry” is at the University of South Australia, City West Campus, Student Lounge on North Terrace, Adelaide. It closes at 5pm on Friday, July 9.