Durban, South Africa, 2008-02

Research on new functions of old garbage bins
Prototypes for mobile music bins, mobile seats, mobile bin bar
On invitation of the Cascoland project our third man, Mantas Lesauskas from Lithuania, and me flew to Durban to research innovative ideas in public space with local garbage materials. Our workspace host, Durban Solid Waste, turned out to be a friendly and rich harvesting ground. As plastic garbage bins do not last long in their intentional use, damaged or broken ones are quickly replaced. So we found a big-scale graveyard of garbage bins and managed to get permission to go fishing for usable materials for our project. We started to give the bins all kinds of new functions, trying to keep the beautiful mobility of the object itself or even emphasize it. We discovered the use of bins as mobile music systems and equipped them with car audio systems and car batteries. At the same time the thought of car tuning inspired our design style. So we used speakers covers as wheel caps. After having produced four of these noisy units, we asked a sound artist to compose individual music for each bin which can be played synchronically. This later became the BIN BAND, which was part of the Cascoland parade through the inner city of Durban. Another direction was intensive interaction with our surrounding. As we noticed a children\’s crèche on the same ground, we experimented with mobile BIN TOYS. And the old bikes which got donated from the Netherlands pushed us further. BIN BIKES, a fusion of garbage bins and bikes were the answer.

Project by Jan Körbes and Mantas Lesauskas