ONYX Hospitality Group, led by President and CEO, Mr. Peter Henley (centre), congratulates students of Kasetsart University’s Scrap Lab who won the Best Design, Inspiring Design and Creative Design Awards as part of its Arts for the Planet 2017 project. The four winningteams received trophies and scholarships worth a total of 110,000 THB from the ONYX Hospitality Group Foundation at the award ceremony and exhibition event.

The event was part of the Arts for The Planet 2017 project, which aims to demonstrate the potential of upcycling and to foster creative and innovative thinking in tackling one of the country’s key environmental issues — waste. For the project, ONYX Hospitality Group collaborated with the Scrap Lab of the Faculty of Architecture at Kasetsart University and Tlejourn, a non-governmental organisation (NGO). The Scrap Lab incorporated the project into its educational curriculum.

Students who participated the Scrap Lab course received the opportunity to learn about issues relating to waste management, and were involved in hands-on activities such as cleaning up a canal, before going on to explore the design ideas and processes. They then experiment a process of developing products from waste materials under the supervision ofrenowned upcycling experts, Associate Professor Dr. Singh Intrachooto, Thailand’s pioneer of ecological design, Head of the Creative Centre for Eco-design and founder of Kasetsart University’s Scrap Lab, and Dr. Nattapong Nithi-Uthai, founder of Tlejourn, best known for its eco-friendly footwear made from upcycling ocean debris.

ONYX Hospitality Group acknowledges the support of sponsors including Kiat Siam Leatherware, Hawaii Thai Furniture and ERP, who provided funds to the students participating in the project in order to support product development. To help the students supplement their creativity with functionality and business opportunities, senior leaders from the three corporate sponsors also provide factory visits and coaching support to the students for development of their product designs and prototypes.

Four out of eight teams participated in the Arts for The Planet 2017 were selected as winners by the reviewing panel. All winning teams were awarded trophies and scholarships at the award ceremony.

The Best Design Award was presented to Mr. Piphat Thongta and Ms. Chawanlapa Darachart for their creations titled “Beep Beep”. The students transformed a combination of leftover sponge, synthetic rattan, dacron, wood and aluminium from a furniture factory and mixed them with concrete to create plant pots and candle light holders which were all presented in practical and visually appealing packaging. Both students received trophies and a scholarship worth 40,000 THB.

The Inspiring Design Award was presented to Mr. Seksit Pakdee and Mr. Guillaume Bichon for their creation titled “Fantasteak”. The students have created a chair, a desk lamp and a photo frame using recycled plastic boards from Tlejourn, left over bottle corks from their university cafeteria, teak and leather scraps from the sponsors’ factories. They credit Lego for the inspiration behind their creation. Both students received trophies and a scholarship worth 30,000 THB.

The Creative Design Awards were presented to two teams of students. The first team, consisting of Ms. Nutkritta Nilkamhaeng and Ms. Lucie Lauwerier, created “From the bin to the sky”, a product made from leftover rope braid scrap from a furniture factory and straws from the university cafeteria into do-it-yourself kites in various shapes. The second team, consisting of Ms. Marie Le Gouellec and Ms. Pattanayu Thongloi, received the award for their product called “Metisse” which are practical wall partitions developed from scrap rubber sheets and foil papers. Both teams of students has received trophies and a scholarship worth 20,000 THB.