The National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) has announced the winners of the 2019 Victorian Design Challenge – the Waste Challenge, which this year focused on reducing, recovering and eliminating waste.  

The Victorian Design Challenge is an annual competition that provokes designers to respond to significant issues Australia and the world faces and aims to inspire impactful and implementable solutions that demonstrate the value of design and creativity to the creation of a better future.

The Victorian Design Challenge offers prizes across three categories: 

  • Professional: $15,000 to realise the winning idea plus NGV Prize Packs for listed team members.
  •  Tertiary: $5,000 to realise the winning idea plus Exclusive Growth Accelerator workshop and 6 x 1-hour mentorship sessions delivered by EY Climate Change and Sustainability Services to guide further development and implementation of the project. Members of the Climate Change and Sustainability team at EY will volunteer their personal time in providing the mentoring sessions, plus NGV Prize Pack for listed team members.
  •  Schools (primary and secondary): One-day tailored learning package at the NGV for up to 50 students, including learning resources, curatorial talk, exhibition tour, lunch, transport and teacher expenses plus NGV Prize Packs for listed team members and supervisor.

The winners for the 2019 Victorian Design Challenge are:

Professional: Studio Periscope

Lisa Oaten, Robert Sim and George Berry of Studio Periscope presented Rollie, a piece of play equipment that enables students to aerate compost, while having fun. This hamster wheel like structure uses the leg power of the children playing on it to turn over the compost, helping to create the ideal conditions for hot composting.

According to Studio Periscope, Australians throw away approximately 3.1 billion tonnes or $8 billion of food waste each year. Rollie aims to address this significant waste issue by educating future generations about the value of food and food waste, through aerobic ‘hot’ composting. 

Tertiary: Maddison Ryder

Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) student Maddison Ryder presented Lettuce Eat, a series of single use plates made from waste Iceberg Lettuce that are immediately biodegradable. The project comments on behaviours of conspicuous consumption and explores food waste and throw away culture through a series of plates developed and designed from dehydrated lettuce.

Secondary and Primary School: Mill Park Library Makers Club

Twelve students from the Mill Park Library Makers Club presented Robot Walking School Bus, a robot designed to pick up students from their homes and take them to school, as well as carrying organic waste that the children bring out from their homes. Inspired by China's line-following battery powered train, the project aims to use a Robot Walking School Bus to help better manage waste around school, in our homes and in the local community by encouraging students to walk to school and pick up litter along the way.