The Plastic Rivers nº 6- Ganges rug, the first “object-manifesto” of this new collection handmade in 100% recycled PET, will be shown for the first time at the Rossana Orlandi Design Gallery during Milan Design Week 2021.
Spanish designer Álvaro Catalán de Ocón arrives at Milan Design Week to present a preview of PLASTIC RIVERS, his first collection created for GAN. Next September 4-12, the Rossana Orlandi Design Gallery, a global destination for contemporary design, will unveil the GANGES rug, the first of four pieces that GAN will launch as a complete collection in 2022.
The origin of this collaboration was conceived during a round table in which Álvaro Catalán de Ocón and Mapi Millet, GAN’s creative director, came together to discuss designs for a better world. PLASTIC RIVERS is, therefore, the result of a shared concern between GAN and Álvaro Catalán de Ocón to raise awareness and combat the global challenge of pollution through sustainable processes and alternatives, with a clear call to action: to break the cycle of plastic waste that ends up polluting our rivers and oceans.
GANGES, faithfully reflects the paradoxical beauty of its origins: the centre of India’s spiritual life and one of the rivers that carries the most plastic waste. Like the rest of the designs in this vindictive collection, it is a handmade rug made from 100% recycled PET using the hand tufted technique. In PLASTIC RIVERS, after a high quality recycling process, the yarn obtained from plastic waste takes on a new meaning and offers a very soft touch weave -similar to wool-, as well as providing a high level of resistance and durability. While generating an attractive and powerful image, the GANGES design highlights the paradoxical beauty of its origins: rivers turned into highways that carry thousands of tons of plastic waste to the oceans. Spectacular basins, mountain ranges, plains and estuaries in greens, earth tones and blues.
In the words of its creator, “PLASTIC RIVERS aims to expand the role of design and bring a holistic view to the profession. Together with GAN and its craftsmen and craftswomen, we have brought to life an “object-manifesto” that reflects the reality of the very material it is made of and seeks to start a conversation about a worrying global problem: the plastic pollution in our rivers and the origin of these residues, which largely come from the commercialization of waste between rich and poor countries”.
The rug is not an interpretation, but rather a faithful scale reproduction of the river it represents, which carries thousands of tons of waste into the Indian Ocean. Thanks to its material and powerful message, GANGES is one of the design finalists in the Urban Public Furniture Design category of the Ro PLASTIC PRIZE 2021, organised by Rossana Orlandi, which in its 3rd edition will take place on 9 September at the Leonardo da Vinci Science and Technology Museum, where the piece will also remain on display from 4 through 12 September in the HALL OF WASTE exhibition. These awards, decided by an international panel of professionals and experts in the frame of the Ro GUILTLESS PLASTIC initiative, aim to challenge and inspire the design community to think differently about how objects are made.
GAN already produces certain collections with recycled materials -such as NUANCES and GARDEN LAYERS by Patricia Urquiola, and DIAMOND by Charlotte Lancelot. Now, with PLASTIC RIVERS, the brand renews its firm commitment to the evolution of craftsmanship, the revaluation of manufacturing processes, and to recycled materials. The complete collection will be introduced in 2022 and will include, as well as GANGES, three additional rugs, each representing one of the world’s most plastic-polluted rivers: YANGTZE (100×400 cm), INDUS (200×300 cm) and NIGER (Ø250 cm).