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#heyddw: Privet Yaroslava Galayko

27 August 2020

Cosmic Coral ©Yaroslava Galayko
Every other week we celebrate one of the most interesting, exciting, intriguing, funny or unusual #heyddw Instagram posts by featuring an exclusive interview in our online DDW Magazine. This week, we spoke to Russian recycled plastic fanatic; Yaroslava Galayko.
Yaroslava Galayko
© Yaroslava Galayko

Hi Yaroslava! Could you briefly describe who you are, where you are from and why you became a designer?

Hi! I'm Yaroslava from Moscow! I have always been a creative mind.  When I was four years old, I painted a white wall in my room black and put bright palm prints on other walls as a manifestation against a standard and boring interior design.

After graduating from University, I first started my career as an interior designer in a local design studio and then opened my interior design studio.  In the eight years that followed, I completed multiple design projects for living- and public spaces. 

Since four years, I only use ‘green’ materials that are safe for people and the environment as well as manufactured sustainably.  I completed several green design projects for the living spaces of ‘orient on LEED’ and ‘BREEAM standards’.  My furniture objects are attempts to find a balance between art, comfort, eco-friendly materials and eco-friendly manufacturing technologies.

Cosmic Coral
© Yaroslava Galayko

You used #heyddw on Instagram to share your latest project with us, Cosmic Coral. Can you tell us a bit more about it?

I once heard the following phrase in the movie "The Graduate" from 1967: "I want to say one word to you. Only one... Plastic... Plastic has a big future. Think about it".

I designed my Cosmic Coral table because I wanted to attract people's attention to the environmental damage of wasting millions of tons of plastics by making an aesthetically attractive object from recycled plastic materials. When people see the Cosmic Coral table for the first time, they usually don’t recognise the material of the base and keep on guessing; salt, mineral... But actually, the base is made from granules of Recycled low-pressure high-density HDPE. The sculptural table frame is formed by spot heating and putting material layer by layer. As a result, no outside binders are used to make the form, which means that the material may be recycled again (Cradle-to-Cradle).

What best describes you as a designer?

I love to experiment. I am intrigued by revolutionary ideas and production processes, and always interested in learning new technologies. I think it’s magical when your thoughts, probably not even fully formulated in your head, lead to a sketch, then a draft and an object afterwards. I am attentive to the details and meanings that characterise an object. I do respect handicraft; it's exciting to get to know the cultural code of the representatives of different countries. Handmade items contain incredible energy as if the author has put part of his or her soul in it. When a new idea is born in my head, I always bring it to life, because I don't want to stop halfway.

Wings Table
© Yaroslava Galayko

You will be presenting at virtual DDW this year. What can we expect?

I want to share the Cosmic Coral project, and expose that a thing made of recycled plastics has a chance to become state of the art.

Most of your work seems directly inspired by nature. What aspect(s) of nature trigger(s) you the most?

There is an old saying that nature is the best artist. Natural textures, patterns, shapes have perfect proportions and colour combinations. You can admire them endlessly. Oceans, mountains and forests, as well as overall flora and fauna, are endless sources of admiration and inspiration for me.

How has the coronavirus impacted you so far? And how do you look to the future?

During the isolation period, I designed and made my Cosmic Coral table. Moreover, I met many interesting people online and took part in several creative projects. This coronavirus pandemic has become a tragedy for many people around the world. I hope that humanity will win and we will live without "social distance" as before. At the same time, I think there has been a significant breakthrough in the use of IT technologies. So DDW will be online too, it is a unique and immersive experience!

What is the most special or remarkable work you have ever designed?

I am proud of Cosmic Coral and the other projects I have completed, but I am sure that the most fantastic project is yet to come.

What are you currently working on?

I am currently researching various ways to make furniture from recycled plastics. I am also working on the collection of objects such as Cosmic Coral.

Cosmic Coral
© Yaroslava Galayko

If you were able to choose anyone in the world to work with (a designer, politician, artist, scientist or someone else), who would that be and why?

As an adherent of green building, I would like to meet like-minded people, those who build buildings according to these principles, for example, Norman Foster. I have also long dreamed of meeting Rossana Orlandi. I admire her! I feel life-changing encounters often happen spontaneously. It is sometimes difficult to predict at first that it will bring incredible inspiration and productive collaboration. In general, I am open to the world!

Do you have any news you would like to share with the DDW community? 

When people were isolated due to quarantine, it became clear: art is a necessity! Humans need to be surrounded by beauty. Dear friends, the good news is that we are engaged in an important profession!

I share all my new projects on my Instagram. I will be happy to meet you there!

Hey Designer! Do you also want to be featured on our website? Use #heyddw on Instagram, and who knows, you might be next!