That’s Interesting and Uplifting 14.05.2020

As we all try to adapt, cope, be safe and do our part to control and overcome the Covid-19 pandemic, it is important to find ways to stay motivated and positive. That is why, over the last few weeks, That’s Interesting has been focusing on initiatives and ideas that are uplifting and inspiring in these challenging times.

So, from real-life superhero action figures to immunity boosting meals, here are some things that made us say “That’s interesting, and uplifting!” in the studio this week.

Pandemic-proof Piazza.

Many are daydreaming of the day when summer afternoons can be spent eating gelato and people-watching in a sunny southern piazza. But, in a post-Coronavirus world, will we be able to use these public spaces in the same way? Caret Studio’s StoDistante installation (meaning “I keep my distance”) is intended to help people take back their towns safely and confidently. The cobblestones of Piazza Giotto in the Tuscan town of Vicchio have been painted with a grid of white squares set 1.8m apart, creating a lattice to help pedestrians navigate the space while maintaining the minimum safe distance to prevent the spread of the virus. Shared open spaces are often the heart of the community – offering people ways of reclaiming, reactivating and reviving them will be crucial for recovery.

Say ciao here

Thank you, heroes.

Superheroes and magical princesses, move aside! A new action figure with incredible real-life superpowers has entered the toy box. In a tribute to the critical work of first responders and essential workers during the Coronavirus pandemic, and to raise money to support them, US toy giant Mattel has launched a special series of action figures that recasts doctors, nurses, delivery drivers and supermarket staff as everyday heroes. The stoic stance, vibrant colours and uplifting gaze of the #ThankYouHeroes dolls inspire confidence, hope and joy, and provide children with a healthy way of processing the emotions and challenges of living in lockdown, and looking forward to their future.

Real-life role models here

Tread (carbon) lightly.

Belgian brand Norm has designed and produced a trainer – the 1L11 – made to have a 6.5kg carbon footprint, which is 80% less than typical shoes. Norm has achieved this through both responsible material selection and more eco-friendly production and distribution methods. The shoes and the pack they come in are made from 90% recycled materials, including a 3D knitted yarn derived from plastic bottles. The upper part of the shoe is also made of one single component instead of several pieces stitched together, which helps to reduce waste. For further reading on how a more robust, forward-thinking design process can help make products sustainable, take a look at our Earth Matters article on Long live the product.

Sustainable sneakers here 

Defensive delicacies.

According to a recent survey, since the start of the pandemic, online searches for immune system-boosting food have risen by 66%. And given that, in the same timeframe, meal and grocery deliveries have had to replace restaurant and café dining, it makes sense for the two trends to converge in a convenient, relevant opportunity for brands. Working at this intersection, US restaurant Just BE Kitchen has partnered with healthcare provider PrimeHealth to offer medically approved immunity-boosting meal kits. All the recipes are designed to include ingredients scientifically proven to support and enhance our body’s natural defence mechanisms. For example, the Warmed Carrot Ginger Soup (pictured) is full of phytonutrients that are said to help the body build a strong defence and fight illness.

Cook up a health storm here

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