Innovation That Matters

Discarded refrigerators converted into unique outdoor cinema

Publishing & Media

Following the destruction of a 20-foot waste mountain of refrigerators, London residents decided to create a unique pop-up cinema built from discarded fridges.

In preparation for the Olympic Games in 2012, a 20-foot tall mountain of discarded fridges was removed from Hackney in East London in 2005. While many residents were glad to be rid of what they considered an eye-sore, others in the community felt they had lost a cultural landmark, and decided to commemorate the fridge mountain through the Films on Fridges project — using abandoned refrigerators to create an interactive pop-up outdoor cinema. As a nod to the Olympic Games which brought about the destruction of the fridge mountain, the fridge cinema only showed films with athletic themes, such as Rocky, Cool Runnings and Pumping Iron. Tickets to the cinema cost GBP 10. According to a report in the Guardian, the fridges were sourced through Wales-based Sims Recycling Solutions, who provided 150 fridges for free, explaining “we didn’t charge for the fridges because we are going to pick them up when the project is over and they’ll be recycled again”. While fridges were used in the construction of the cinema and provided the inspiration behind the pop-up venue, the films themselves were not projected onto fridges, as it was feared this would have created a surface with too many lines on it to be suitable as a projection surface. As well as providing entertainment, of course, a major motivation behind the project was to educate people about the huge numbers of fridges being thrown away each year, and to raise awareness for the potential to recycle these fridges, rather than mining for new metals. Having beaten their Kickstarter goal of GBP 6,000 by over GBP 1,000, the Films on Fridges season ran from July into August. We’ve seen plenty of pop-up venues on our virtual pages before, but one that entertains as well as raising awareness of environmental issues such as fridge disposal is certainly worthy of notice. One to be inspired by! Spotted by: Alice Revel



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