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Something new: feed the world

Vanessa Yung


Hong Kong's landfills are set to go a little hungrier this festive season, as Olympian City prepares to deck its halls with decorations made from canned goods rather than with the usual disposable kind. When all the ho-ho-hoing has stopped and Santa has returned north for another year, the cans will be used to feed the needy.

Jointly organised by redistribution initiative Food Angel and the Tai Kok Tsui shopping mall, Canstruction Inc is coming to Asia for the first time, having been staged in 202 cities worldwide since 1992. The programme is intended "to gather artists and design and engineering industry professionals for one good cause - hunger relief - and to showcase their talents to the local community", says Chakshu Mehta, director of operations at Canstruction Inc.

"We do that with a design competition using canned food. These structures are exhibited for two weeks to two months before being dismantled and the cans given to local food banks or local hunger relief organisations," she says.

Seven local teams - from the likes of Hong Kong Design Institute, New Life Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association and NIL Design Studio - were each given 12 hours to create an installation made of cans they themselves had collected. The creations - including charity organisation GLV's piggy bank-shaped piece titled Save Love for the Needy and The BSC Group of Companies' rice bowl-shaped A Full Bowl of Love - will be displayed in the atrium of Olympian City 2 until January 1. Next to them stands an 18-feet tall Christmas tree made from more than 2,000 drink cans.

After the exhibition the cans will be donated to six local food banks and organisations including Food for All, Feeding Hong Kong, Action Care and Giving Love.

"Cans don't expire for several years and the food bank can keep them in stock for the needy," says Mehta.

The public can vote for their favourite work and donate cans to the more than 24,000 the seven teams have used. For more information, call 3118 2348.