designer / researcher / teacher
MArch Architecture - Sheffield (2012)
BA (hons) Architecture - Leicester (2009)
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How can local grass-roots organisations across Europe learn from each other and develope resilient networks of support that facilitate the exchange of knowledge and expertise?
The Eco-Nomadic School is a pan-European educational initiative that seeks to connect locally-acting grass-roots organisations in partner countries so that they may learn from each other's experience and expertise. One way it does this is by taking group representatives to meet each other, and experience the context of their friends first hand and in-situ.
The Eco-Nomadic School commisioned a Live Project at the SSoA to facilitate one such meeting. A workshop - hosted by guerilla-gardening pioneers and local food production advocates Incredible Edible Todmorden (UK) - would receive representatives from recycling and re-use experts, the Atelier d'Architecture Autogeree (FR), artist's network, MyVillages (NL / EI), and the Fundatia Comunitatea pentru Dezvoltare Locala (RO), an organisation working to develop sustainable tourism and economic practices in rural Romania.
The project involved developing the concept of a 'food commons' with Incredible Edible Todmorden, producing visions, proposals and breifing material that would help the organisation to move forward with its own goals and ambitions. Getting to know the organisation, the town and its various communities provided the backdrop for this work, which then informed the design of - and setting for - the workshop for the Eco-Nomadic School.
With no single common language, we had to think carefully about how we communicated the logistics and content of the workshops - in English, French and Romanian - developing a strategy for communication and dissemination that was highly visual. We employed pedagogical tactics that did not rely too resolutely on verbal or written communication, instead using drawing exercises and walking tours alongside cooking demonstrations an slide-shows.
The workshop was documented using a set of postcards, some produced during teh workshop itself, that participants could use to stay in touch with each other and pass on information.
I have maintained a relationship with the Eco Nomadic School beyond this Live Project, particpating in further workshops in Romania and France.
You can watch a video of the assessment presentation for the Growing (in) Todmorden Live Project below:
A Q+A session that followed the presentation can be viewed below:
The You Can Say Yes Compendium - which compiled a series of precedent examples of local authority and other land-owners saying 'yes' to innovative uses of land connected with food production - can be viewed via Issuu - here.
Special thanks: Incredible Edible Todmorden (especially Nick, Mike, Mary, Estelle, Pam, Helena and Fred), Atelier d'Architecture Autogeree (Constantin, Doina, Leo, Sara, Daniel), FCDL (Mirce, Bogdan, Teo, Radu), MyVillages (Anne-Marie), Nigel Lowthrop (Hill Holt Wood), John Sampson (URBED), Thalia Charalambous, Conor O'Sullivan, Michael Breen, Eirini Christofidou, Sarah Broadstock, Jenny Ohlenschlager, Fengyan, Ying, Emma, and Martha Shields (SSoA)
Sheffield School of Architecture /
Incredible Edible Todmorden /
Eco Nomadic School