Design influences the future - It is estimated that in 2050 there will be more plastic than fish in the ocean. The exhibition Ocean Plastics, which opened in June at the Röhsska Museum in Gothenburg, wants to highlight how designers consider possibilities and materials of the future through various design projects.
Marine littering is one of the major environmental issues of our time. Scientists have identified the problems caused by pollution, but they alone cannot solve them. Maybe design can help. Today, designers are becoming alchemists, scientists, activists and social entrepreneurs. Their involvement stems from interdisciplinary analysis, a collaborative spirit and a belief in design’s ability to contribute to the solution, rather than the problem.
“With the exhibition Ocean Plastics we want to highlight questions relating to environmental issues by presenting design projects which address plastic pollution through questioning our relationship to the sea, presenting strategies for cleaning up the oceans, recycling existing plastics and exploring the potentials of bio-plastics,” says Johan Deurell, curator at the Röhsska Museum.

Design is everywhere
A basis for shifting consumer patterns and public opinion is that individuals have access to knowledge as well as different kinds of capital. That is why an important facet of the exhibition is to raise the issues in an intriguing way in the spirit of popular education.
“With Röhsska’s message that “design is everywhere” the museum also says that products and materials have a great impact on nature and our climate. Ocean Plastics highlights the widespread use of plastics today and the various ways in which design and innovation unite in the efforts to come up with alternative design solutions and new materials in relation to us consumers,” says Nina Due, Röhsska Museum director.


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More about the exhibition:
Ocean Plastics presents a selection of design concepts and consumer products: from mass-produced industrial design to exclusive artisanal goods, sports fashion, print and films. The exhibition spans two floors and is divided into four themes.
Plastics and the ocean: In this part of the exhibit, the museum collaborated with the Chalmers University of Technology and the Keep Sweden Tidy Foundation to explore how plastics are used and how they end up in the ocean.
Blue humanities: By highlighting fundamental questions about who and what we are, creators hope to blur the distinction between humans and the sea.
Staying with the trouble: Through interdisciplinary collaboration, designers explore the possibilities and the commercial potential in collecting and recycling plastic waste.
From cradle to cradle: Since many synthetic plastics were not designed to be burned or reused in a safe way, designers explore biodegradable materials and bioplastics.

Participating designers: Adidas and Parley for the Ocean, Ramin Bahrani, Formfantasma, Ina Johansson Lidman and Dave Hakkens, Jessica den Hartog, Malmö Upcycling Service, Roos Meerman, Christian Meindertsma and Label/Breed, Ocean Clean-Up, Optimist for Havet, Aurore Piette, Snњhetta and NCP, Basse Stittgen, Studio Swine, Margarita Talep, Yesenia Thibault-Picazo.
Producer: The Röhsska Museum
Curator: Johan Deurell (exhibition curator, the Röhsska Museum)
Exhibition design: Wang & Söderström
Graphic identity: Wang & Söderström
Collaborators: the Chalmers University of Technology, the Keep Sweden Tidy Foundation, Kvadrat and Stena Recycling.
The exhibition runs from June 15, 2019 to January 5, 2020.
For more info, call +46.(0)31.3683150 or see