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Vietnamese man transforms discarded plastic materials into artworks

Vietnamese man transforms discarded plastic materials into artworks

Wednesday, June 05, 2024, 10:55 GMT+7
Vietnamese man transforms discarded plastic materials into artworks
Cards made by Nguyen Phuoc Quy Thanh using old shirt buttons

Editor’s note: In response to the call for participation in the ‘Green Regeneration’ contest, an event hosted by Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper in collaboration with the Vietnam Packaging Recycling Organization (PRO Vietnam) to promote a green, sustainable lifestyle within local communities, reader Nguyen Phuoc Quy Thanh submitted his entry. In this piece, he recounted his initiative of recycling discarded plastic materials into artworks.

In today’s society, plastic waste poses an acute environmental problem, not only in Vietnam but globally. 

Its characteristic longevity in decomposition means it persists in ecosystems for years, even centuries. 

Confronted with this issue as a chemical engineer, I started to repurpose discarded plastic materials into artworks featuring children’s cartoons, portraits, national flags, and posters going against child abuse and promoting COVID-19 prevention.

These creations utilize materials like old shirt buttons, plastic beads, electrical wire jackets, and discarded utensils, transforming them into meaningful and esthetically pleasing pieces. 

Rather than discarding them, I believe in harnessing these materials to create art that not only raises awareness about plastic waste but also conveys poignant messages about real-life situations.

Whether preserving memories through portrait photos, delighting children with animations, or fostering international solidarity through pictures of national flags, each artwork is meticulously designed to blend eye-catching colors and intricate details, ensuring authenticity.

It also has an exceptionally long life cycle due to the enduring nature of plastic waste, which is challenging to decompose. 

In the event of damage, the work can be repaired repeatedly.

Moreover, this line of artwork not only stimulates creativity and dexterity in children but also offers relaxation and stress relief to adults after long days. 

Additionally, I create models and cards from recycled plastic, featuring cute animal illustrations and uplifting idioms, further spreading positivity and hope.

In the near future, I plan to create artworks depicting Vietnamese history for school exhibitions, aiming to inspire and educate both Vietnamese citizens and international audiences.

Through repurposing discarded plastic materials into meaningful works of art, my goal is to touch hearts and raise awareness about responsible plastic waste management. 

I hope that each piece I create can spread positivity and life values worldwide.

Here are some pictures of my works:

A rabbit figure made by Nguyen Phuoc Quy Thanh using old shirt buttons, plastic beads, and electric wire jackets.

A rabbit figure made by Nguyen Phuoc Quy Thanh using old shirt buttons, plastic beads, and electric wire jackets

An artwork made by Nguyen Phuoc Quy Thanh using old shirt buttons advocates against child abuse.

An artwork made by Nguyen Phuoc Quy Thanh using old shirt buttons goes against child abuse.

An artwork made by Nguyen Phuoc Quy Thanh using old shirt buttons advocates against child abuse.

An artwork made by Nguyen Phuoc Quy Thanh using old shirt buttons goes against child abuse.

An artwork made by Nguyen Phuoc Quy Thanh using old shirt buttons features Buddha.

An artwork made by Nguyen Phuoc Quy Thanh using old shirt buttons features the Buddha.

An artwork made by Nguyen Phuoc Quy Thanh using old shirt buttons features Doraemon.

An artwork made by Nguyen Phuoc Quy Thanh using old shirt buttons features Doraemon.

An artwork utilizing recycled plastic materials to honor teachers on Vietnamese Teachers’ Day, November 20, 2023.

An artwork utilizing recycled plastic materials to honor teachers on Vietnamese Teachers’ Day, November 20, 2023

To promote and instill a green, sustainable lifestyle within local communities, Tuoi Tre, in collaboration with PRO Vietnam and other affiliated units, is hosting the ‘Green Regeneration’ contest. 

As part of the Green Vietnam 2024 project, which launched on April 20, the contest serves as a platform for both domestic and international readers to showcase actions, initiatives, and innovative products aimed at recycling, reducing emissions, and safeguarding the environment, all in the pursuit of a greener Vietnam.

Individual participants are encouraged to share their practices and products for recycling, reusing, and water and energy conservation. 

Additionally, community teams and groups are invited to present their efforts to clean and enhance their communities. 

Likewise, businesses are encouraged to showcase their experiences with sustainable production, circular production processes, and eco-friendly products crafted from recycled materials, all aimed at reducing emissions and promoting environmental stewardship.

The contest is meant to promote the development of green urban areas, lifestyles, tourism, transportation, energy usage, workplaces, consumption patterns, and other aspects of sustainable development. 

Evaluation criteria for submissions include feasibility, potential for growth, practicality in daily life, applicability for individuals and businesses, economic and social efficacy, and the degree of contribution to environmental preservation and national sustainable development.

Entries will be assessed by an expert panel comprised of leading professionals and businesses in the fields of environment and circular economy. 

The panel’s evaluation will carry 80 percent of the total score, while reader votes will account for the remaining 20 percent. 

Readers can cast their votes awarding stars, hearts, and likes to the entries, with the stars worth 15 points each, the hearts worth three points each, and the likes worth two points apiece.

Rules of the 'Green Regeneration' contest:

1. Eligibility: The contest is open to domestic and foreign residents currently residing and working in Vietnam.

2. Entry submission: Entries can be submitted by individuals or groups. The representative of the group must submit the entry with the agreement of all members.

3. Content requirements:

   - Products and ideas presented in the competition must be conceived and developed within Vietnam.

   - Entries can take various formats such as articles, images, video clips, PowerPoint presentations, or graphics.

   - Articles must not exceed 1,200 words, include more than 15 photos, or have a video clip longer than five minutes.

   - Entries can be presented in either Vietnamese or English.

4. Description criteria: Entries should comprehensively describe the product, detailing the implementation process from material resourcing to design, recycling, and the product’s life cycle. Additionally, the entries must evaluate the practical application of the product and its technology for individuals, consumers, and society.

5. Originality: Contest entries must not have been previously published on any media or social platforms.

6. Usage rights: Tuoi Tre and associated entities retain the right to utilize contest entries in their publications, subject to discussion with the author if deemed necessary.

7. Disqualification: Contest organizers reserve the right to reject entries that are deemed inappropriate or violate contest regulations.

8. Submission process: Readers and contestants can access the Green Vietnam page of Tuoi Tre to submit entries and stay updated on contest-related information.

9. Selection process: Entries that passed the preliminary round will be selected for publication on the Green Vietnam page of Tuoi Tre and eligible for royalties.

10. Final decision: The organizing committee reserves the right to make the final decision regarding all aspects of the contest.

11. Entry period: From May 15 to August 15, 2024.

Prize structure for the 'Green Regeneration' contest:

Monthly prizes:

   - 1 prize of VND5 million (US$196) awarded to a typical contest entry each month

   - 1 prize of VND1 million ($39) determined by reader votes each month

Final prizes:

   - 1 special prize from the Green Vietnam project advisory board

   - 1 first prize valued at VND30 million ($1,180)

   - 2 second prizes valued at VND20 million ($786) each

   - 3 third prizes valued at VND10 million ($393) each

   - 5 consolation prizes valued at VND5 million each

   - 10 prizes determined by reader votes, each worth VND1 million

Prizes include cash, Tuoi Tre Star rewards, and gifts from the organizers.

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