• © Jules Mas
    Two Projects Receive the 2017 BG Sustainable Development Award
  • © Valentin Kaiser
    Two Projects Receive the 2017 BG Sustainable Development Award
  • © ECAL/Younès Klouche / L. to r.: A. Georgacopoulos, V.Kaiser, J.Mas, P.Kohler et V.Jacquier
    Two Projects Receive the 2017 BG Sustainable Development Award


Two Projects Receive the 2017 BG Sustainable Development Award

Published on 24.07.2017

Jules Mas is one of the two winners of the 2017 BG Sustainable Development Award, presented during the graduation ceremony at the Lausanne University of Art and Design (ECAL) on June 29. He worked on football boots, fully moulded in polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and entirely recyclable.

The project undertaken by Jules Mas started from a simple observation: 300 million people around the world play football, representing 400 million pairs of football boots sold every year. Those shoes are used intensively, which makes their lifespan very short (six to eight months for an amateur active two to three times per week). The materials used to make them include plastics, leather, resins, and glue, which represent significant waste when disposed of.

The advantage of PET is that it can be solid, rigid, or flexible; injected or thermoformed; and even made into a fibre – making it perfectly adapted for shoes. Jules Mas therefore combined the various forms of the same plastic base type to produce a completely mono-material object that is made from recycled plastic bottles. He avoided the use of glue and resin by instead employing a thermo-sealing approach to join together the different shoe pieces. The final product cis made up of three parts: an assemblage of PET textiles layered with a very thin and flexible PET film for the upper part of the shoe; an intermediate part, made from injected PET to make it flexible enough to follow the movement of the foot and rigid enough to support the heel; and two studded elements for the sole, also made from injected PET, that provide good foot grip thanks to their stiffness.

The second winner, Valentin Kaiser, focused on permaculture. This systemic and comprehensive approach aims to design agricultural systems, human habitats and other systems by taking inspiration from natural ecology, biomimicry and tradition. Developed in the 1970s to combat pollution and climate change, this approach is only now beginning to spread more widely.

Employing his own graphic design tools and breaking with the tradition usually associated with permaculture (the colour green, hand drawings, organic fonts and rigidity), Valentin Kaiser presents his version of permaculture in a three-part manual. A more theoretical first part recounts the essentials of the approach; the second part is a practical scenario for creating one's own ecosystem with examples of elements, interactions, and benefits; and the third part presents all of the techniques for elaborating one's own design in permaculture. The manual also has an annex with lists of plants, planting calendars, a glossary, as well as a sequence of images on the front and back covers that provide a better understanding of the approach. Valentin Kaiser's idea was to play with diverse textures to bring a bit of materiality and disorder to what would be typically somewhat rigid concepts.

These two very different projects, both highly interesting in their unique ways of understanding sustainable development, garnered the unanimous enthusiasm of the jury. The award was presented by Pierre Kohler, CEO of BG Consulting Engineers, in the presence of ECAL’s Director, Alexis Georgacopoulos, its Head of Visual Communication, Vincent Jacquier, and the Head of its Industrial Design bachelor’s programme, Stéphane Halmaï-Voisard.

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