Zaishu mini-documentary

Zaishu-header-art

a documentary by Mike Crowhurst
in association with Red Earth FIlms

CAN ONE MAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE? MATT BUTLER WANTS TO CHANGE THE WAY WE LOOK AT GLOBAL COMMERCE, CREATIVE PARTICIPATION AND SUSTAINABILITY.

schoolgirls-on-zaishu-thumbEnticed by the idea that one person can make a difference, furniture designer Matt Butler trades chrome for plywood and designs a non-precious chair which he hopes will become a catalyst for positive social change.

Treated like a project rather than a product, the “Zaishu” (a small stool/box based on Japanese style) goes beyond the product–consumer culture of design by creating a progressive spirit of participation, creativity, sustainability and evolution of ideas. This collaborative vibe now involves a growing network of designers, artists and community groups around the world to create the artwork and host the assembly and installation events.

Connected By Design examines Matt Butler’s journey from the original conceptual days and prototypes, through to following him on a personal and professional expedition into India as he tries to get other cultures to understand his vision and get them onboard. From Tokyo to Berlin to Stockholm to Mumbai to Matt’s home town in Yamba, Australia, we see how Zaishu attempts to inspire kids, artists and communities to join together in creative participation and positive social interaction. Will Matt succeed in instilling a change in our cynical and commerce-driven modern world?

You can watch the full 25 minute doco here (watch on YouTube to see it in full 1080p HD):

Check out a few Production photos from the shoot in India. (Flickr)

Producer/Writer/Director/Editor/Cinematographer
Mike Crowhurst

Featuring
Matt Butler, Shalu Sood, Ken Butler, the Bal Krishn family & staff

Stills Photography
Matthew Butler

Executive Producers
Cunning Crow Productions
A & F Cunningham
Zaishu Pty Ltd

In association with Red Earth Films

  • (28 June 2007) A screening of this India portion of the Zaishu documentary footage appeared as part of d factory – a monthly design forum live at the Sydney Powerhouse Museum. Matt Butler made a live visual presentation regarding his Zaishu: India trip which also coincides with the Powerhouse acquisition of some Zaishus.
  • the Zaishu documentary on DVD accompanies the real India-made Zaishus when they are sent to customers as a bonus background story to the making of their Zaishu.