02 Jul 2022

Kilkenny student designs top entry in Kingspan awards

Kilkenny student designs top entry in Kingspan awards

Helen Steele, Irish artist and fashion designer, Jay Dunphy, foundation student at NCAD and Thomas Jefferson, marketing manager at Kingspan Water & Energy Ltd

Jay Dunphy, from Urlingford, a first-year art and design student at the National College of Art & Design (NCAD) has taken part in the inaugural Kingspan ‘Reuse, Recreate’ design challenge.
A student design project, created and sponsored by Kingspan Water & Energy, offered students from NCAD the opportunity to showcase their talents and get creative with second life material. The first-year students were tasked with redesigning an object using pellets from reclaimed Kingspan Oil Tanks, showcasing the importance of the circularity of plastic use.
Jay used the pellets to create a key that can be worn as a ring.
“My project was inspired by my research at the start of the elective; when I was doing research and learned about how keys are cut with the use of codes,” he said. “The idea of keys and what they can represent, as well their almost omnipresence from bike locks to front doors, to locks on bridges inspired me.
“I then used this idea for various pieces of jewellery, such as an engagement or marriage rings. One was printed in a way that allows the other to perfectly interlock, which makes them ideal for use as an engagement/wedding pair for one, or one each for a couple or good friends,” explains Jay.
Thomas Jefferson, Marketing Manager at Kingspan Water & Energy Ltd comments: “At Kingspan, we are committed to operating a sustainable business that delivers sustainable products and solutions. But this doesn’t stop at a product’s lifespan. Innovation is an important part of our business and key to a more environmentally friendly future. This is why we decided to team up with the young creatives of the future to design and create wearable art using Kingspan recycled pellets, bringing a second life to this material.”
As part of the ‘Reuse, Recreate’ initiative and to encourage the ongoing use of sustainable design, Kingspan donated a 3D printer to the college. The final creations were brought to life by the students in 3-D print, creating an array of final pieces, varying from EarPods to wearable pieces of art.
“This creative partnership with Kingspan has given our students the opportunity to work on a really innovative and challenging project, and it’s reinforced the importance of using reclaimed materials and of their versatility,” said Tara Whelan, Interaction Design Lecturer at NCAD.
“We were particularly keen to highlight the juxtaposition between using industrial pellets to create objects that are traditionally viewed as quite precious e.g. jewellery and accessories.
“We’ve very proud of the range and calibre of submissions from our students and are pleased that this project has positively impacted on our students’ knowledge of materials and the importance of reuse.”
The students ‘Reuse, Recreate’ designs and creations were put on display in the NCAD gallery and judged by Irish designer Helen Steele, Dr. Coílín Dubhghailc, Lecturer at NCAD and Thomas Jefferson from Kingspan Water & Energy Ltd.
Commenting on the calibre of entries and the winning project, artist and fashion designer, Helen Steele says:
“As a past fashion student at NCAD and an advocate of sustainability, I was particularly interested in getting involved in ‘Reuse, Recreate’ project.
“The importance of reusing materials already in existence is one that I champion, and I think it’s incredibly innovative for NCAD and Kingspan to come together to create a brief that both educates students and encourages new thinking.
“These students’ projects are the perfect example of how diverse materials can be. From an oil tank, to raw pellets, to a beautiful piece of jewellery.”
Kingspan Water and Energy is a market-leading manufacture of energy management solutions.
Further information is available from kingspanwaterand

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