Flatfolds

Design for Good

FoldFlats: Pop-Up Emergency Shelter

2010 is barely halfway through and it's already been the most disastrous year in modern history. Suddenly, disaster relief becomes not just a playground of humanitarian agency manifestos but a real, palpable point of life-or-death difference. There is hardly a greater test of design than in disaster relief, where it has to marry the utility of addressing the life-or-death need at stake with the comforting simplicity of use and operation that offers disaster victims the much-needed sense of groundedness and control. The FoldFlats tent from German designer Adrian Lippman does just that.

Made of weather-resistant light composite panels, the tent comes flat-packed and offers emergency shelter that's easy to ship and quick to assemble.

Images courtesy of designboom

Revealed at the DMI International Design Festival in Berlin earlier this month, Fold Flat Sheet offers a humanitarian spin on the recent pop-up store trend in retail.

Though the particular tent exhibited was in a neutral color, Lippman's original concept involves brightly colored panels that serve both an emotional function, harnessing the mood-boosting effects of color at a time in victims' lives filled with painful grayness, and a utilitarian one, making the shelters easy to spot from a distance.

Maria Popova is the editor of Brain Pickings, a curated inventory of miscellaneous interestingness. She writes for Wired UK, GOOD Magazine and Huffington Post, and spends a shameful amount of time on Twitter.

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