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The PET Lamp Project was started in 2011 by Spanish designer Alvaro Catalán de Ocón as a response to the problem of plastic waste in the Colombian Amazon. The project's goal is to reuse PET plastic bottles. The environmentally conscious designer has been collaborating with traditional craft communities worldwide, such as those in Ethiopia, Colombia, Chile, Japan, and Chile, for the past five years to transform plastic waste into an expanding line of exquisite, handcrafted PET lamps.

Recently, Catalán de Ocón visited Arnhem Land in Australia's Northern Territory to collaborate with eight native Yolngu weavers, who inspired him with their art.

Similar to his earlier collaborations with traditional craftspeople, Catalán de Ocón did not have a preconceived notion about the lamps' design when he arrived at the Bula'Bula Arts Centre in Ramingining. Rather, he allowed the skilled weavers to go free, and they started making enormous constructions that were modelled after traditional Yolngu mats. 

The resulting suspension lamps, which feature distinctive fringes and are made from naturally dyed pandanus fibres, use PET plastic bottles as the focal points of their circular woven designs.

Boiling natural pigments and ingredients, like eucalyptus bark and ash, produced vivid, sunny colours. The leaves were then dyed and allowed to dry in the sun. Then, each mat was woven into two larger lampshades, symbolising the kinship among members of the same clan. "The two masterpieces become a complex, harmonious merge between Aboriginal kinships, weaving technique, topographic elements, and design," says Catalán de Ocón. 

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