The world has become much more eco-friendly in the past few decades. However, there are some things that we are only willing to compromise so far on, such as cars. Air pollution is a huge problem, but how do we fix something that we can’t even really see?
The creators of AIR-INK have come up with a solution that benefits the environment and culture at the same time. AIR-INK is a startup that turns air pollution from cars, trucks, generators, etc. directly into ink that can be used safely for art.
Step 1: putting the collecting device on the exhaust pipe of a car
Step 2: process all the bad stuff out
Step 3: use the ink for art!
The product is not only reducing pollution, but it is also being used as a political campaign to increase awareness about the seriousness of pollution. In just 45 minutes of collection from an exhaust pipe, one whole pen can be filled. This really puts in perspective just how much pollutant is released into the air in a short period of time. In addition to perspective, the startup is creating murals using its own ink, adding to street art and in turn to culture.
This product was created by Graviky Labs, spearheaded by Anirudh Sharma. Sharma is an inventor who studied with MIT and has been recognized for other projects; he has even made Forbes 30 Under 30. Sharma dropped out of college and made a name for himself based on his interactive creations and collaboration. It is clear that Sharma is passionate about bringing forth the best qualities of many disciplines to create something useful.
“That fusion of art, that fusion of expression, and science… when it happens, I think new magic appears” -Sharma
Not only is Sharma inspired by interdisciplinary collaboration, but he is also inspired by the culture he is surrounded by and the problems people face every day.
“In India, there are so many problems around you. Either you crib about them or say let’s solve them, let’s do something about it. There’s a big opportunity here” -Sharma
In the article “Creativity Across Cultures,” Lubart discusses the interaction between culture and creativity. In some cases, the culture can be a “channel for creativity” because some domains are especially prominent; in others it can stifle creativity. For Sharma, it seems like his environment has provided him with a channel to not only solve a problem but create something beautiful out of it. And who knows, maybe this idea can be expanded onto larger scale things such as factories, or maybe be a mandatory feature on a car?
Culture and product definitely have a two-way interaction, and with political figures pretending climate change doesn’t exist, hopefully AIR-INK will act as a wake-up call and inspiration that solutions do exist to our continuing environmental issues.