Local River is the “home storage unit for fish and greens” as conceived by Mathieu Lehanneur with Anthony van den Bossche. Inspired by the Locavores, a group of culinary adventurers who eat foods produced in a radius of 100 miles around their city, Local River anticipates the growing influence of this group (the word ‘locavore’ made its first appearance in an American dictionary in 2007) by proposing a home storage unit for live freshwater fish combined with a mini vegetable patch. This DIY (GYO?) fish-farm-cum-kitchen-garden is based on the principle of aquaponics coupled with the exchange and interdependence of two living organisms – plants and fish. The plants extract nutrients from the nitrate-rich dejecta of the fish. In doing so they act as a natural filter that purifies the water and maintains a vital balance for the eco-system in which the fish live. The same technique is used on large-scale pioneer aquaponics/fish-farms, which raise tilapia (a food fish from the Far East) and lettuce planted in trays floating on the surface of ponds. From April 25th to June 21st 2008 at Artists Space.
Photos and information on the Orquideorama Botanical Garden in Medellin Colombia via inhabitat.com
Architects Felipe Mesa and Alexander Bernal wanted the Orquideorama to grow in the same way that a garden seeds and develops, with one “flor-árbol” popping up next to another. This lead them to design the installation as a series of interconnected modular structures (14 in all) specialized for a variety of functions including event halls, butterfly reserves, and flower gardens. Fittingly, this repetitious cellular weave resonates with another organic structure: honeycomb.
Each “flor-árbol” is composed of a steel reinforced trunk and six hexagonal petals that form an intricately latticed patio. The plants situated beneath each trunk are sustained via rainwater collected by the petals, and are protected from the elements by the translucent pine wood weave that is sourced from reforested lands. Taken as a whole, the Orquideorama is a delicate display of the relationship and structural similarities between architecture and living organisms.