Dezeen Magazine

Competition: five copies of Fantastic Plastic by Susan Mossman to be won

Dezeen has teamed up with Black Dog Publishing to give away five copies of "Fantastic Plastic: Product Design and Consumer Culture" by Susan Mossman.


The 224 page book explores how plastics have influenced product design and inspired work by artists and designers ranging from Charles Eames to the creators of LEGO.


This competition has now closed.


The five winners will be selected at random and notified by email. Winners’ names will be published in a future edition of our Dezeenmail newsletter.


Subscribe to our newsletter for information about future competitions, site updates and details of new jobs on Dezeenjobs.


Here is some info about the book from Black Dog Publishing:


Fantastic Plastic is a comprehensive survey of the ecological, technological, and aesthetic qualities of plastic. With over 50 different groups, in hundreds of variations, plastics are prevalent throughout our lives and are used in the manufacture of everything from children’s toys, to cutlery, clothes, and containers. Whilst often viewed as a cheap, common and disposable material plastic has also been hugely influential in contemporary design, from the ipod to the Tom Vac chair. Fantastic Plastic shows how product design has developed and considers its usability, technology and appearance.


Drawing on the fascinating history of plastics, beginning with its first appearance at the 1862 Great International Exhibition in London, Fantastic Plastic explores the evolution of this ubiquitous and endlessly malleable material. Through its various trademarked names—Spandex, Teflon, Nylon, Rayon, Formica, Tupperware—to its role in modern design, the book looks at how the function and reputation of plastic has changed over its lifetime, and considers the future of what became the defining material of the twentieth century.

Fantastic Plastic features a diverse range of artists, including: iconic twentieth century designer Charles Eames; Eero Aarnio, inventor of the hollow suspended ‘ball’ or ‘bubble chair’; multi-award winning designer Phillipe Starck; and others such as Christo and Jeanne, Tatty Devine, Cake and Neave, and Patric Coyle. The book also features projects as diverse as the Eurostar, the Microsoft optical mouse, and the Volar nightclub in Shanghai, and explores classic uses of plastics in design and medicine, from Dunlop, LEGO and Biro, to plastic blood, hip replacements and artificial limbs.

In light of our growing environmental awareness, Fantastic Plastic looks at how ‘green’ plastic initiatives, such as biodegradable and recycled plastics, are being developed for the twenty-first century, and how, for example, the number of plastic recycling handling and reclaiming post-consumer plastics has nearly tripled over the past several years.

In many ways, the history of plastics is the history of contemporary industrial design, and Fantastic Plastic provides a fascinating look at how designs using plastics can be considered works of art, as well as objects of our everyday lives, and is an essential book for designers, academics and everyone interested in popular consumer culture.

Susan Mossman is the curator of Plasticity:100 years of making plastics exhibition at the Science Museum and the author of Early Plastics: Perspectives 1850-1950.

Fantastic Plastic: Product Design and Consumer Culture

Susan Mossman

July 2008


224 pages

300 b/w and colour illustrations

29 x 21 cm

ISBN: 978 1 906155 40 7

UK £24.95


Buy this book at the Dezeenbooks store

(in association with