Local and international creators designing with waste as the starting point at The Waste Refinery

Commissioned by DesignSingapore Council (Dsg) and curated & produced by award-winning Singapore creative agency Kinetic, The Waste Refinery at the National Design Centre Singapore is an exhibition centered on one of the world’s biggest sustainability challenges. As the world meets to discuss the urgent climate agenda at COP26, The Waste Refinery presents works from a select list of Singaporean, regional and international designers and creatives. Running 6 November 2021 to 16 January 2022 at Singapore’s National Design Centre, The Waste Refinery brings together leading innovators looking to solve the problem of waste, and provide ideas towards a more sustainable future.

Without urgent action, global waste is set to increase by 70% over the next 30 years. As we grapple with municipal, industrial and agricultural waste across the world, the exhibition includes projects that span fashion, product design, art, craft and material innovation – from pineapple leaves as a substitute for leather, to creating homewares from sea shells and turning zinc ashes into porcelain glaze, the works on display showcase how waste can take on a second life as useful products with a focus on both form and function.

“The Waste Refinery shows how creative ingenuity can benefit communities by diverting waste from landfills and generating new revenue streams, while transforming raw materials into precious objects. We hope that this exhibition at the National Design Centre will inspire visitors to rethink how we prescribe value to objects and aesthetics, and see the endless potential of using design to achieve a more sustainable lifestyle,” says Mark Wee, Executive Director of Dsg.

The Waste Refinery asks: “What if waste could be reframed and thought of as an abundant resource, rather than unwanted material?” and “What if waste could be made useful and beautiful?” The inventive contributors to this project are united in the belief that the time has come to never let waste go to waste again.




Piñatex by Ananas Anam







Monolith collection by LAAT.SG





Coasters and Dish by Space Available


Mycotech Lab process (left) and products (right)


Works by Newtab-22







Drown by Kllymrck

Confetti Rocks by Gellyvieve







Ignorance is Bliss by Agne Kucerenkaite


Community-Woven Tapestries by Soft Studio







The Ink-Surrection Series by Wild Dot


Irotsugi by Kazuhiro Yamanaka







Garden State Palimpsest by Zen Teh



The Waste Refiney