The Kawara Bench by Tsuyoshi Hayashi - one of DECO's stunning sustainable stylish finds

The 2015 Solve New Talent competition with Adams & Adams focused on sustainable design being taken to new levels. Tsuyoshi Hayashi’s Kawara bench is just one of the sustainable, stylish finds we discovered. 

One such inspiring example of waste product being repurposed through innovative design – in particular ceramic waste product that can be difficult to recycle – is the Kawara bench designed by Tsuyoshi Hayashi. The Kawara bench is a modular seating system constructed from industrially-rejected Japanese rooftop tiles (that would otherwise be discarded) mounted atop a wooden frame.

Photographs: Tsuyoshi Hayashi

5% of the whole roof tile production (more than 65,000 pieces per year), deemed ‘useless waste’ and headed for landfill, is made ‘useful’ once again by Tsuyoshi’s design – simply cutting off the damaged part.

The Kawara Bench comes in two variations: the silver smoked roof tiles are from a particular area in Japan, close to Kyoto where there is huge demand for the silver tiles to be used in more traditional castles, shrines and temples. The colored glazed tiles are from Takahama and Iwami. However, both processes result in defective matter, which is difficult to recycle.

By just cutting off only the damaged part and mounting them into a wooden structure, ‘useless wastes’ can be rendered to ‘useful matter’ once again.

Photographs: Tsuyoshi Hayashi

Hayashi invites people to see the Kawara bench as a catalyst for other waste products having enormous potential to be transformed into useful matter. And in this case, not only useful, but an extraordinarily beautiful design too.

Kawara Bench can be a clue to change one’s way of looking; all the useless waste has the potential to be transformed into useful matter.

Photographs: Tsuyoshi Hayashi 
Photographs: Tsuyoshi Hayashi

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LIKED THIS? Then take a look at Ilse Crawford’s new sustainable range for IKEA


The official 2016 Trends Issue of ELLE Decoration South Africa is on shelves now, at your nearest magazine retailer. Enjoy DECO’s exclusive decor, design, lifestyle and fashion report for the year ahead. Everything from architecture to scents, this is your comprehensive guide to make informed and confident decisions. Pick up your copy today and tell us what you think on Twitter @Elle_Deco, sharing your #TrendIssue #DECOSelfie