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Topographic Objects Mount Everest Coffee Table by Charles Birshaw

Topographic Objects

Using nature's beauty and power to create meaning and desire for waste and conventionally unusable materials, through waste plastic sculptures and furniture.

This project came from my current notion and way of thinking to design to use more of the materials we need to find a use for and to create long lifestyle products from it, opposed to the traditional design strategy of designing to use less of a material we need to avoid entirely. I found myself exploring the idea of creating topographic models of historic parts of the planet, made from recycled or "conventionally unusable waste materials" such as ocean plastic. This exploration led to finding a way to add value to a waste resource that is damaging habitats around the world and turn it into a form of desirable art.

The product range comprises of a desk sculpture of Mount Everest, a wall hung piece of Mount Fuji with the beautiful ocean plastic marble effect material fully exposed and two large Mount Everest Coffee tables, one using compression moulded ocean plastic and the other using a cast ground plastic mixture.


The designs are created by collecting waste plastic, separating out the colours. Melting this down and moulding the plastic to create blocks of varying sizes. The topographic maps of each famous land mass are then either cut out of the block using a CNC milling machine or compression moulded before being finished and cased in glass.


Charles Birshaw








Industrial design
Colour, material and finish
Design for manufacture
Art direction

"What excites me is seeing how creating products at the intersection of art and design can evoke so much emotion, feeling and memories that it brings a completely new life and use to waste materials."

Charles Birshaw

Topographic Objects Mount Everest Coffee Table by Charles Birshaw
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