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Swarovski Announces Winners of ‘Conscious Design’ Program Inspiring Others to Spark Positive Change in the World in Partnership With Central Saint Martins, UAL

Published 01-17-20

Submitted by Swarovski

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Swarovski named five students as winners of the Conscious Design program: Sean Ross for Solar Furnace (MA Material Futures); Imogen Burch for ‘Creating Clarity’ (BA Jewellery Design); Hannah Livesey for ‘This Little Light of Mine’ (BA Textile Design – Weave); Sissel Gustavsen for ‘Precious Fish’ (BA Textile Design – Print); and Millicent Saunders for ‘Construction Rebellion’ (BA Textile Design – Knit). 

The Conscious Design program was integrated into the curriculum of the Jewellery, Textiles and Materials Programme at Central Saint Martins, UAL over a period of six months. Each student was challenged to create work that takes Swarovski upcycled crystal as its starting point, embracing sustainable materials and concepts that have a positive social impact and address real business challenges.

Designed to inspire and educate, the program featured briefing presentations followed by lectures for each course on the theme of Conscious Design, co-curated by Swarovski and Central Saint Martins and delivered by expert guest speakers including Greg Valerio, Fairtrade Gold advocate, and Wilson Oryema, artist and writer.

Wilson Oryema mentored the students throughout the design process and provided creative feedback on their first presentations alongside Central Saint Martins tutors and Swarovski representatives. Short-listed students then presented their final work to a judging panel, who selected the winners.

As part of the program, students contributed to the Swarovski Conscious Design Hub, an online platform on Central Saint Martins’ website curated by Wilson Oryema and Swarovski.

The open source hub contains insight on the research and creative process of the students’ projects and inspiration for conscious design initiatives, showcased through video, research and design work.

Through the Conscious Design program, Swarovski aims to nurture the next generation of conscious designers who will contribute towards a more sustainable industry.

Wilson Oryema commented: “The principles of Conscious Design are needed now more than ever. It has been a great opportunity to learn more about the concept, and work with Swarovski on this project at Central Saint Martins. From start to finish, it has been incredibly inspiring. Seeing the initial reactions from students, to how they each took the brief in a unique direction, to then seeing the many innovative final projects. I am very excited to see where they, and future students, take Conscious Design to next.” 

WINNING PROJECTS

Material Futures (MA)

Students were challenged to explore the power of light through the medium of Swarovski crystal. As future thinkers, these students were asked to develop innovations that harness the potential of light and may inform new technological or scientific processes.

Sean Ross designed Solar Furnace, a conceptual installation to use the power of crystal to harness light to create synthetic gems. A large satellite dish covered in mirror-backed Swarovski crystals reflects sunlight into a second smaller dish, which reflects sunlight back through a glass Fresnel lens. This lens focuses the solar energy into a crucible where solar fusion takes place to create the gem.

Jewellery Design (BA)

Students were challenged to create jewelry pieces that combine upcycled Swarovski crystals with other materials, in particular ‘future materials’ that may be zero waste, environmentally friendly or part of the circular economy.

Imogen Burch designed Creating Clarity, a range of rings that highlight the issue of climate change. Angular gold frames are set with upcycled Swarovski crystal stones. Each crystal is engraved with words connected to a poem called ‘Dear Climate’ written by Burch to accompany the project. The rings are a tool for discussion as well as a personal reminder of the wearer’s commitment to sustainability.

Textile Design (BA)

Students were challenged to develop new crystal applications in print, weave and knit designs that celebrate cultural fusions in the city of London, working the concepts of sustainability and social purpose into their design story.

Weave

Hannah Livesey designed This Little Light of Mine, a structural weave designed to enhance the beauty of natural light. Natural yarns were colored with natural dyes, including turmeric powder and blueberries, which will biodegrade more easily than synthetic fibers. Upcycled crystals were woven throughout the fabric to reflect light on surrounding surfaces and complement the design. 

Print

Sissel Gustavsen designed Precious Fish, a decorative wallpaper embellished with Swarovski crystals for home or hospitality interiors. The artistic design celebrates the wonder of fish and sea creatures that we should admire and protect. It is a creative reminder that seafood is something we should enjoy in moderation to prevent overfishing.

Knit

Millicent Saunders designed Construction Rebellion, an upcycled fabric to be used for green walls and plant pots. The design is created from reflective waste materials from construction sites, such as hi-vis jackets, knitted together with colorful Swarovski crystals. The fabric is designed to reduce air pollution while also attracting wildlife, helping to mitigate the negative effects of construction on the environment.

For more information, please contact:

Communications Director, Swarovski: myriam.coudoux@swarovski.com

CSM x Swarovski Conscious Design Hub: http://bit.ly/SwarovskiConsciousDesignHub

NOTES TO EDITORS

  • Swarovski’s Conscious Design initiative is focused on how the company can inspire others to spark positive change in the world by motivating the next generation of outstanding designers to create their products and collections responsibly, and by integrating sustainability into the creative learning projects supported by the brand.

  • Swarovski has partnered with BA Jewellery Design students at Central Saint Martins for over 18 years on numerous projects.

    • Since 2011, Swarovski and the Swarovski Foundation has supported two final year BA students at Central Saint Martins, one in Jewellery Design and one in Fashion. 2019 sees the Swarovski Foundation widen its support by increasing the number of recipients to its prestigious scholarship program from two to eight BA students in their final year, split equally across fashion and jewelry courses.

    • In 2016, Swarovski introduced upcycled crystal to its partnership with Central Saint Martins, underlining the importance of sustainability and responsible practices in the creative process.

      • Swarovski is currently working with 17 design schools globally including Parsons School of Design, Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), and Bunka Fashion College, helping incorporate sustainability into the curriculum with upcycled crystal and sustainable design challenges.

      • These partnerships provide emerging talent with the opportunity to build a career driven by purpose, responsibility and commitment to making a positive impact. 

Swarovski

Swarovski delivers a diverse portfolio of unmatched quality, craftsmanship, and creativity. Founded in 1895 in Austria, the company designs, manufactures and markets high-quality crystals, genuine gemstones and created stones as well as finished products such as jewelry, accessories and lighting. The Swarovski Crystal Business is run by the fifth generation of family members and has a global reach with approximately 3,000 stores in around 170 countries, more than 27,000 employees, and revenue of about 2.7 billion euros in 2017. Together with its sister companies Swarovski Optik (optical devices) and Tyrolit (abrasives), Swarovski Crystal Business forms the Swarovski Group. In 2017, the Group generated revenue of about 3.5 billion euros and employed more than 32,000 people. A responsible relationship with people and the planet has always been an integral part of Swarovski’s heritage, and is embedded today in the company’s well-established sustainability agenda. In addition, the global Swarovski Waterschool education program has reached 500,000 children on the world’s greatest rivers, and the Swarovski Foundation, set up in 2013, works to support culture and creativity, promote human empowerment, and conserve natural resources to achieve positive social impact. www.swarovskigroup.com

Swarovski Foundation

The Swarovski Foundation was set up in 2013 to pursue charitable goals to honor the philanthropic spirit of Daniel Swarovski, who founded the crystal business in 1895. Since then, five generations of the Swarovski family have reinforced the company’s commitment to philanthropy and charitable giving. The Swarovski Foundation’s mission is to build on this heritage by supporting charitable initiatives and organizations working in three areas. Fostering Creativity and Culture by promoting the arts, advancing education, supporting cultural institutions and innovative projects with cutting edge talent; Promoting Wellbeing, supporting initiatives on women’s empowerment, access to health and education and assisting the advancement and development of young people and communities; and Conserving Natural Resources through water sustainability and environmental projects to promote the conservation, protection and improvement of the physical and natural environment. The Swarovski Foundation Board of Trustees is chaired by Nadja Swarovski. www.swarovskifoundation.org

Central Saint Martins, UAL

Central Saint Martins, UAL is globally renowned for the creative energy of its students, staff and graduates. Its educational reputation across art, design and performance is demonstrated by alumni who shape the world including Grace Wales Bonner, Matty Bovan, Terence Conran, Michael Fassbender, Antony Gormley, Craig Green, Tom Hardy, Isaac Julien, Jean Jullien, Christopher Kane, Helen Marten, Stella McCartney, Alexander McQueen, Morag Myerscough, Sandy Powell, Laure Prouvost and Raqib Shaw among many others. Central Saint Martins is part of University of the Arts London (UAL), an international centre for innovative teaching and research in arts, design, fashion, communication and the performing arts. www.arts.ac.uk/csm 

UAL               

University of the Arts London (UAL) offers an extensive range of courses in art, design, fashion, communication and performing arts. Our graduates go on to work in and shape the creative industries worldwide. UAL is ranked second in the world for Art and Design in the 2019 QS World University Rankings by Subject ®. The University has a world-class reputation and is made up of six equally renowned Colleges: Camberwell College of Arts, Central Saint Martins, Chelsea College of Arts, London College of Communications, London College of Fashion and Wimbledon College of Arts. www.arts.ac.uk

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Swarovski

Swarovski

Swarovski delivers a diverse portfolio of unmatched quality, craftsmanship, and creativity. Founded in 1895 in Austria, Swarovski designs, manufactures and markets high-quality crystals, genuine gemstones and created stones as well as finished products such as jewelry, accessories and lighting. Now run by the fifth generation of family members, Swarovski Crystal Business has a global reach with approximately 2,560 stores in around 170 countries, more than 25,000 employees, and revenue of about 2.33 billion euros in 2014. Together with its sister companies Swarovski Optik (optical devices) and Tyrolit (abrasives), Swarovski Crystal Business forms the Swarovski Group. In 2014, the Group generated revenue of about 3.05 billion euros and employed more than 30,000 people. A responsible relationship with people and the planet is an integral part of Swarovski’s heritage. The global Swarovski Waterschool education programme has reached 257,000 children on the world’s greatest rivers, and the Swarovski Foundation incorporated in 2013, works to support culture and creativity, promote wellbeing, and conserve natural resources to achieve positive social impact.

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