Urbanization is the word of our times. In 1950 only30% of the world’s population lives in the city but it is projected that by2050 over 70% of the global populations will be urban dwellers. With such rapidgrowth cities are faced with undaunting levels of pollution unheard of just acentury ago. As architects and designers we are entering into a new era ofenvironmental thinking that has to either help our planet, recycle some of ourcreations and consider the biosynthesis of humans with nature; this is aphilosophy call Biophilic Designs.
Furniture has always been one of the most vibrantdiscipline in design as it is comparatively unlimited in its physicalrestriction thus leaving more leeway to push for innovation. There are manyup-cycle creations, environmental conscious ideas and even some that biomorphswith part of our body. But I wonder, what if a piece of furniture that can helpyour well-being as well as the external environment while still looking good inany given situations. Working with our partners in Italy for over 2 years we havefinally came up with solution that can use Light and Air, 2 elements providedin abundance by nature, to clean our environment of toxins and bacteria!
Traditionally photocatalysis is a process that usesnano-particles such as Titanium Dioxide (TiO2) to clean VOC such as CarbonDioxide, Nitrogen Dioxide and Formaldehyde via the activation of UV rays suchas the sun. In addition, the hydrophilic nature of the treatment causes waterthat comes into contact to form an even layer, thereby allowing the dust anddirt that have accumulated on the surface to be washed away automatically.While this process was revolutionary as an architectural material it is verylimited due to UV rays being harmful in long term exposure to human skin. Whatour patented treatment only needs are any present interior/exterior lightingand circulating air thus eliminating the danger of direct UV rays exposure andcan work inside any spaces of a building. This specialized treatment can beapplied to any surface and is Non-toxic and Bio-degradable.
Our design started life as a tribute the amazing rolling hills of Guilin in China. The design has a rectangular base that is embedded with LED lighting. A Set of 5mm acrylic panels (I call them Hills!) in variety of texture and finishes can be placed freely in the grooves situated on the base. During the day when the design is exposed to light the photocatalytic process will begin while at night when the light is switched on it will continue.
There are 2 sizes for this design with The Effective Cleansing Area (E.C.A) of Guilin Large @ 185cm wide will be approx 5.4sqm while Guilin Small @ 60cm wide will be approx 1.8sqm. Since the “hills” can be displaced freely by the user the lamps will have infinite customization ability for any interior.
It is the world first environment cleansing furniture that makes you and your family live healthier and happier but also a design that can work on mass to clean our planet. We believe furniture has to be more then just a nice piece of functional art/design and we hope that GUILIN will lead the way for a new generation of environmental living that any health conscious individuals or environmental planetarian will love to have.