UBC Graduate Research

Plastic Metabolism in a Garbage Apocalypse Kazanowski, Emily A.


We have a plastic waste crisis. Our waste is concealed in bins, taken out to back lanes, buried at the landfill or shipped overseas. We have become increasingly expert at physically distancing ourselves from our waste. Spaces for waste are not for humans. Waste is invisible to us. Plastic Metabolism in a Garbage Apocalypse operates within a fictional, yet plausible, garbage strike. This strike brings the global waste crisis home, registering it at the scale of a household. How do we cope? Our perceptions must shift if we are to escape the constricting infill of waste in our previously pristine domestic realms. We must see waste as a raw material. This project proposes a new system of construction, operating on the existing body of the Vancouver Special, a locally specific and common housing typology. Domestic spatial relationships are re-imagined establishing an intimate relationship between the human body and waste material and processes. Building with waste is imperative. We must see waste as an opportunity, and allow new growth through the reconstitution of waste materials. Using a playful and optimistic perspective, Plastic Metabolism in a Garbage Apocalypse allows the messy and uglier sides of human life to support a productive domestic environment.

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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International