If you’ve ever been stuck with an old laptop or an old cellular telephone that no longer works, you’re sure to have been aggravated by what to do with such an item. If it reaches the landfill, it will never biodegrade. But finding the correct government department that will accept such waste is not easy. In my county, I have to wait for an electronic waste day, which only comes around once a year—seemingly whenever I’m on vacation. Clever designers are also faced with this conundrum, although the best minds are tackling this issue with style, panache, and ingenuity. One design that’s inspired by this social problem is N+EW Light by Chilean graphic designer Rodrigo Alonso Schramm.
N+EW Light. Designed by Rodrigo Alonso Schramm.
Discarded Electronics Get a Second Life in Rotomolded Lamp
The N+EW (No More Electric Waste) Light is produced through a rotomolding process, “in a mix of low density plastic with crushed electronic waste plastic.” Using raw materials donated by local recycling company Recycla, Alonso Schramm shapes the N+EW Light’s diffuser in a recycled iron mold. As if that weren’t enough green design, the base of the lamp “is produced with smelted aluminum of beer and drink tins amongst others.” The result is a multi-colored , almost bulb-shaped lamp that measures 32 x 32 centimeters.
A large-scale floor lamp, N+EW Light has the same appeal as other variegated green products such as Vetrazzo’s recycled glass countertops and Stephan Schulz’s recycled chair-sofa system—all of which feature the colorful spots that illustrate the method of the construction (and the composite nature of the recycled materials). But N+EW gets lit from inside, intensifying the dot-matrix effect. And since N+EW Light uses electronic waste, it’s a perfect piece for offices in particular, where it can showcase what you can do with work-related techno-objects once their useful life is over.
About the Designer: Rodrigo Alonso Schramm is a Chilean graphic designer, although his work encompasses many realms, from fashion to furniture, home accessories to advertising. A partner of Porta4 Design Studio and lecturer at various universities, Alonso Schramm has designed for major international brands such as Renault, Lucky Strike, and Sony; and his work has appeared on television shows such as The Bachelor, The Apprentice, and The Ellen DeGeneres Show. He is the winner of Design Talents IMM 2006 for Selk Bag, and his N+ew Light was awarded Best Product of Social Responsibility ChileDiseño 2007.