Talk

Plastic Lab Talk: Meet Beirut’s Pioneering Plastic Waste Up-cyclers

Past event Wednesday 18 January 2023
  • Date

    Wednesday 18 Jan 2023

  • Time

  • Location

    Plastic Lab

  • Free

Meet Imane Assaf and Don Wright who use plastic waste to support the people of Beirut.

Come along to meet Ahla Fawda’s founder Imane Assaf and Don Wright, a Scottish upcycling artist now living in Beirut, and learn more about how they are using plastic waste to support Beirut’s communities through Lebanon's crises.

Founded in Beirut, Lebanon in 2014, Ahla Fawda is an NGO which responds to the urgent humanitarian needs of its community.

Lebanon is grappling with economic and financial crises, the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and the consequences of the 2020 Beirut Port explosion. As a result, many people living in Beirut cannot afford to meet their basic needs.

In the face of this, Ahla Fawda works to support their community and in 2021 they designed a plastic exchange initiative which provides people with food and other basic supplies in exchange for household plastic waste. This plastic is then sold to recycling companies, used to make new products and in creative design workshops, outreach activities and projects with local schools.

By reframing plastic waste as a valuable untapped resource, Ahla Fawda is supporting communities in need, changing perspectives on what is considered rubbish and creating circular economies.

We are also joined by Sandra Bou Ghanem, an emerging Lebanese fashion designer using “waste” as a raw material, recycling and upcycling to create garments which defy and challenge the current fashion system. You can see examples of these garments in our Plastic Lab.

This event is in collaboration with UNESCO City of Design Dundee.

Plastic Lab invites you to explore the promise and problem of plastic. Housing Precious Plastic recycling machines and hosting a dynamic programme of events, this free interactive space encourages visitors of all ages to learn, question, challenge, and act on some of the most important issues relating to plastic today. From board games to plastic sorting stations and pop-up talks, drop in and explore some of the free things you can see, do, and get involved in.

Plastic: Remaking Our World is the first exhibition co-produced by V&A Dundee, Vitra Design Museum, and maat, Lisbon with curators from V&A South Kensington.

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