The four elements
Students at the Lower Rhine Polytechnic (Hochschule Niederrhein) needed to come up with some ideas. Epson’s commission ran: “To develop new production models – From digital print to assembly”. The ideas which these young people produced can be seen on the exhibition stand. Following print, cut and welding, a mini-collection has been produced, but a collection devoted to global issues. “We wanted to produce in a sustainable way and through our models to draw attention to the environment”, says Anna Charlott Buttkus from the student team. No water, and less energy, are needed for the sublimation-print process used. The paper employed emits the colour by transfer to the fabric, is then white, and can be recycled without any problem. And the material used in the students’ collection already consists of recycled polyester.
The various layers are all differently printed. Over the jumpsuit with dark red poppies the model carries a double-face sheath – once with the same poppies, and once showing the world as it will look if we change nothing – empty and dark. “We wanted to present the positive and the negative here”, Buttkus explains. The other doll is dressed in the “four elements”. Fire, water, heaven and earth are revealed from one layer to another.
But, when it comes to sustainability, Epson sees beyond mere production and is already taking a sustainable approach in its everyday activity. “We use the exhibition stands again and again, and we have banned plastic”, says Carola Bolte. As a gift to remind visitors of the fair, Epson is giving away a re-usable fruit bag made of recycled material. And it looks pretty stylish (see above). The design, which has also been realised on handbags and chair covers, comes from Wiebke Höskes, likewise of the Lower Rhine Polytechnic. Epson has placed its focus at the fair on its approach to sustainability, as part of “Sustainability at Texprocess”: