Pupa- Waste not Want it
A cardboard cave like no other. Pupa is a sustainably designed cardboard structure that is constructed entirely from reclaimed cardboard and pallets.
Part of the ‘Waste Not Want It’ programme headed by financial and media company Bloomberg, it is a platform for some of the world’s most dynamic artists and designers. Bloomberg are committed to creativity, education and sustainability, which are also some of the values of Lazerian and therefore an honour to be commissioned to create a unique installation for their London offices. The purpose of the programme is to create an installation that utilizes the waste products of Bloomberg as well as providing a dynamic, surprising and sustainable environment for their employees.
waste not want it
After visits to Bloomberg’s own recycling centre, where they repurpose all their own waste, it was decided what materials would be used in the design. There were a lot of materials that had potential and great capability that included cable flex, cardboard boxes, keyboards and wood pallets amongst others. A lot of these materials are able to be reinvented into technically innovative and environmentally responsible work.
Once the preferred material had been chosen delivery was made to the Lazerian workshop.
Cardboard and wooden pallets arrived but the original Bloomberg cardboard arrived in damp bales so was pulped and re-constituted at John Hargreaves factory in Stalybridge using machinery originally installed in 1910.
The recycled cardboard was pulped and reconstituted into triangular sections, which combine to create the cave-like Pupa structure.
Pupa is a sustainable project as well as harnessing the well being needs of Bloomberg's employees and visitors. Not only is it environmentally responsible, it also introduces a creativity and dynamic environment within the space.
Constructed in triangular sections Pupa utilises the structural and acoustic properties of cardboard. Computer design techniques were used to generate the form and the individual components were then extracted from the virtual model to create flat layouts that are glued together by hand.
The form and aesthetics are inspired by natural habitats – cocoons, beehives, spider’s nests and weaver birds nests. The ceiling assumes the appearance of a shelter, snug and cave like, but also references the vaulted ceilings of church naves. The design aspects of creating a cave-like structure was deliberate in a way to provide a cocoon-like construction- almost like a building within a building.
Pupa is a habitat that sits amongst the offices of Bloomberg for the staff to utilise as they wish. The plan was to take people away from the working environment to a new solidary location for time to reflect and gather their thoughts and feelings. The way the cardboard cave-like structure has been designed and assembled it also acts as a sound barrier, which can obviously keep the distribution of the busy office to a minimum
The curved form wraps around a 14-seat table that also has a surface of tessellated cardboard.
The legs of the table and surrounding chairs were fabricated from dismantled timber pallets, while the padded chair seats are covered with leather off-cuts.
The numbers, that can be extrapolated from Pupa, reflect the almost Sisyphean task faced, whether by human, bird or insect, to create these sorts of structures:
1,981 units build the table and pillar. Coincidentally 1981 is the year that Bloomberg was founded
1,800 wooden slats salvaged de-nailed, dried, planed, laminated, sawn and turned
5,040 wooden components achieved from pallets
12,960 nails removed from wooden pallets
3,510 kg of cardboard pulped and recycled
3,972 triangular components for the exoskeleton providing the cover
3,972 triangular cardboard inserts for the structure
180 wooden pallets taken apart for chair frame and legs
252 leather offcuts from make up the chair seats
825 kg in return, reducing carbon omissions