Seedless Fruit

We have tamed nature into our fields, domesticated it into our gardens, let it enter the urban landscape and the interior of our city homes. Now, how, — as we leave the permanent home, merge into a state of flux between temporary spaces of living, working, con­necting — how do we render nature into the picture? Will it accompany us outside again to offer itself to us as we walk the street, pass through the metro station, catch the bus and pick, plug, harvest and enjoy the fruit of tomorrow?

 

Seedless Fruit is a series of artefacts containing shape studies in plaster merging existing fruit and vegetable types, documentation of harvesting postures and a 5-course meal to be harvested from designated food objects, and  Seedless Fruit, the next generation of fruit designed on the basis of natural growth patterns and consumer data.

 

Seedless Fruit is a year-long design research project as part of the 100 Product for 2050 project with the tutors Eric Klarenbeek and Maartje Dros at DAE.

Analysis of natural growth and rotting processes of common fruit and vegetables

3D-printed Seedless Fruit, the next generation of fruit designed on the basis of natural growth patterns and consumer data

3D-printed Seedless Fruit, the next generation of fruit designed on the basis of natural growth patterns and consumer data

The Publication Seedless Fruit showing »Sea Salt Pastry layered with ceramic slabs« as part of the Food/Material Series that incorporates the picking and plugging moments of harvesting into a 5-course meal

 

Movements and body postures in the harvesting of different fruit and vegetable types

Shape studies in plaster merging existing, naturally grown fruit and vegetable typologies. (Photography by Niclas Ekwall)

Publication Seedless Fruit including a series of interviews with several local Dutch chefs on the topic of synthetic optimisation of food crops

»The melong is a fruit grown in 5 hours and 35 min- utes. Beginning from 1 to 2 a.m. in different time zones slightly varying due to their urban context, movement can be noticed on the drop-like nozzle tip of the stem. Descending from the ceiling of the tram stop, the manufacturing plant produces a soft-tex- tured blob. It fills with a juicy, fibred liquid, thicken- ing as it runs down the soft interior of the fruit.«

 

Excerpt from the publication Seedless Fruit

3D-printed Seedless Fruit, the next generation of fruit designed on the basis of natural growth patterns and consumer data

3D-printed Seedless Fruit, the next generation of fruit designed on the basis of natural growth patterns and consumer data

Publication Seedless Fruit giving an insight into the development towards the next generation of fruit tailored to meet improved efficiency and consumer data

The Publication Seedless Fruit showing »Baiser creme elevated on metal cloud« as part of the Food/Material Series that incorporates the picking and plugging moments of harvesting into a 5-course meal

The Desert »Dark Chocolate Splits Coating Flexible Acrylic Tubes« as part of the Food/Material Series that incorporates the picking and plugging moments of harvesting into a 5-course meal

Rubble Probes—
Soft Rubble as a Building Process

The publication Rubble Probes explores Soft Rubble applied as a the construction system in the temporary contexts of the urban space in transformation. In form of spatial structures based on historical vernacular typologies, Soft Rubble becomes a tool for appropriation and activation as it inserts itself into the abandoned land plots or disused gaps found across Rotterdam. Assembled by the local neighbourhood by use of local building rubble, Rubble Probes become means to appropriate the temporary square adjacent to on-going construction sites, unused public spaces or as part of temporary cultural programming.

 

Rubble Probes is a collection of Rotterdam-based narratives of possible application of the textile construction system Soft Rubble. Soft Rubble is a master thesis project developed by Charly Blödel in the Social Design Department at the Design Academy Eindhoven in 2020.

»The Shelter«, based on the jardinu pantescu, the typical enclosed dry-wall gardens for single trees in Sicily

»The Cooler«, based on the yakhchal, the ancient ice pit developed by the Persions 400 BC to store ice in the desert

»The Pod«, based on the Sassi di Matera, the cave dwellings still inhabited today in the Southern Italian city of Matera

 

»The Windbreaker«, based on the cabane de camargue, rounded, reet-thatched houses positioned in direction to withstand the strong Mistral winds in the Camargue region of France

Urban Quarries & Material Imaginaries,
An On-going Research Residency at
Atelier Luma, Arles [FR]

Production Processes of Construction Waste in Arles documents the preliminary research and mapping of building rubble in and around Arles. Construction waste is a material flow that occurs on diverse sites and in various mixtures. It is a material flow that is split up between these sites of production and entangled in the different frameworks of economic interest and policy.

 

This collection of processes gives an insight into the sites, circumstances and parties involved in the production of such mono-material and mixed-matter conglomerates. It provides a basis on which to question the conditions under which these conglomerates are produced and the systems that hold in place the concept of ‘waste’.

Terre Durable in Nîmes, a recycling facility, depo and supplier for crushed building waste

Hills of building waste integrating into the landscape

Part of the preliminary research was the mapping of building waste retrieved from one of the buildings part of the Luma Foundation that is currently under renovation.

The catalogue of quantified materials that are extracted during the renovation allows for the reemployment in custom-made materials for the new building.

Building rubble is a site-specific material that illustrates a local mixture of minerals. Due to Arles rich heritage as part of the Roman Empire, the local rubble contains a remarkable amounts of marble.

“Arles is the result of these early recycling patterns due to the nat- ural resource shortage inherent to Arles’s geographical location. It is a patchwork that has turned invisible on St. Trophine but certainly still recurs in the fragments of construc- tion waste that scarcely leave the historical centre yet present them- selves in pieces of marble among the common crushed concrete, clay tile and gravel on waste recycling sites such as the one of Terre Durable before they are filled back into the ground in road construction works or landscaping works.”

Excerpt from the essay ‘A Local Mixture’ in the publication

 

Soft Rubble

Building rubble – one of the world’s largest waste streams – is mainly downcycled for the construction of roads, the backfilling of exhausted quarries and other landscaping processes. As the seemingly valueless material is filled back into the ground, the natural landscape we quarry to create it turns into a man-made landscape that stays untouched.

 

With Soft Rubble, Charly Blödel investigates mechanisms of value production and loss. In a performative build-up, textile containers made of Polyethylene sheet are filled manually with crushed rubble. This construction system can be filled and emptied repeatedly to create a variety of spatial configurations, becoming a tool to engage with the changing value of our material surroundings.

  • PhotographyViktor Hübner
  • ProductionZeilmakerij Van Doorn, Rotterdam
  • Material Supply & Building SiteVan Berkel Bouwstoffen & Transport

The Western city exists in a state of hyper-productivity resulting in an imminent reproduction of the urban built environment. As a new building is erected, the previous is rendered obsolete. This swift exchange generates swaths of building waste. In 2015 alone, the city of Rotterdam produced 394.000 tons of building rubble. After being transported to a recycling facility this mixed-mineral waste is crushed and downcycled to filler material in landscaping and backfilling processes. Soft Rubble investigates mechanisms of both production and loss of value in the context of the fragile existence of raw matter on the verge of becoming mineral waste. It does so in the form of a construction process that positions building waste as building material.

To build the first prototype of Soft Rubble, 5 people filled 12 tons of building rubble into 4 bags in 8 hours.

The building team including Lisa Machemer, Charlélie Flamant, Matilde Losi, Daniel Parnitzke and Charly Blödel built the first prototype at Van Berkel Bouwstoffen & Transport, a building rubble recycling facility in Eindhoven on June 13th, 2020.

Soft Rubble is a tarpaulin construction system comprised of differently shaped textile containers made of 250g Polyethylene sheet. In a manual process, these reusable textile elements are filled with crushed building rubble to form rigid yet flexible stone walls. Any number of these containers can be combined and filled to create a variety of spatial configurations site-specific to local context and materiality. Preserving the porous material state of building rubble, Soft Rubble becomes a tool of activation to engage in both a physical and abstract manner with the changing value of our material surroundings.

The three-metre tall bags were produced by hand at Zeilmakerij Van Doorn in the Rotterdam Harbour.

Soft Rubble bags are made out of 250g Polyethylene sheet with nylon seams, reinforced with a polyester strap.

»While construction industries extract natural resources from the existing natural landscape in a process of gradual depletion, man-made material conglomerates are simultaneously reverted to the same landscape. As they are filled back into the ground, the natural landscape we quarry turns into a man-made landscape that stays untouched. Why do we quarry one landscape, while we stay blind to the other?«

Soft Rubble is a master thesis project developed in the Social Design Department at the Design Academy Eindhoven in 2020 with the support of the mentors Brecht Duijf , Stéphane Barbier Bouvet, Nadine Botha and Henriëtte Waal under the former head of department Jan Boelen.

On Quarrying A Man-Made Landscape is the written master thesis that accompanies the thesis project Soft Rubble.

On Quarrying A Man-Made Landscape

The Western city exists in a state of hyper-productivity resulting in an imminent reproduction of the urban built environment. As a new building is erected, the previous is rendered obsolete. This swift exchange generates swaths of building waste. In 2015 alone, the city of Rotterdam produced 394.000 tons of building rubble. After being transported to a recycling facility this mixed-mineral waste is crushed and downcycled to filler material in landscaping and backfilling processes. On Quarrying A Man-Made Landscape investigates mechanisms of both production and loss of value in the context of the fragile existence of raw matter on the verge of becoming mineral waste. It does so in the form of a construction process that positions building waste as building material.

 

On Quarrying A Man-Made Landscape is a master thesis written by Charly Blödel in the Social Design Department  at the Design Academy Eindhoven in 2020.

On Quarrying A Man-Made Landscape is the written master thesis that accompanies the thesis project Soft Rubble.

Abstract

The Western city portrays a state of hyper-productivity resulting in an imminent reproduction of the built environment that it inhabits. As a new building is erected, the previous is rendered obsolete. The swift exchange from use to disuse produces swaths of building debris that is being crushed and returned to the ground as a base layer in road construction or filler material for exhausted quarries and other landscaping purposes. While construction industries extract natural resources from the existing natural landscape in a process of gradual depletion, man-made material conglomerates are simultaneously reverted to the same landscape. As they are filled back into the ground, the natural landscape we quarry turns into a man-made landscape that stays untouched. What makes us avoid this other, man-made landscape is the mere ‘stuff’ that it is made of – waste.

 

How can we see this man-made landscape as a quarry and its material wealth as potential rather than waste? Tracing the condition under which raw matter can only become waste when framed as an industrial building material, waste is laid out as a social contract. Looking at the methodology of the three architectural practices of Rotor, BC Architects and Assemble, nostalgia is the strategy through which value is returned. Through the lens of the aforementioned practices, quarrying is outlined as a process of retrieval of raw matter, followed by the production of knowledge and affiliation with the local community, and eventually, its repeated usage becoming ritual. As such, the concept of quarrying reads as a local practice of creating value around the quarried matter rather than the industrial extraction of value as a pre-defined commodity.

 

Nonetheless, when nostalgia is utilised in the ‘re’-cycling, ‘re’-purposing, or ‘re’-use of waste, it is ultimately limited to a form of repair. Therefore, I argue that an alternative perception is required, a perspective that loses the ‘re’ and deviates from moving backwards towards the next level of progress. In this context, the concept of the quarry is evolved as a narrative practice that changes the perception of waste into the perception of a raw man-made matter as it produces new stories for a changing landscape. This potential is discussed in the context of my own work Soft Rubble that uses textile as a temporary binder to configure construction rubble to a free-standing, load-bearing textile wall.

Soft Rubble

Building rubble – one of the world’s largest waste streams – is mainly downcycled for the construction of roads, the backfilling of exhausted quarries and other landscaping processes. As the seemingly valueless material is filled back into the ground, the natural landscape we quarry to create it turns into a man-made landscape that stays untouched.

 

With Soft Rubble, Charly Blödel investigates mechanisms of value production and loss. In a performative build-up, textile containers made of Polyethylene sheet are filled manually with crushed rubble. This construction system can be filled and emptied repeatedly to create a variety of spatial configurations, becoming a tool to engage with the changing value of our material surroundings.

  • PhotographyViktor Hübner
  • ProductionZeilmakerij Van Doorn, Rotterdam
  • Material Supply & Building SiteVan Berkel Bouwstoffen & Transport

The Western city exists in a state of hyper-productivity resulting in an imminent reproduction of the urban built environment. As a new building is erected, the previous is rendered obsolete. This swift exchange generates swaths of building waste. In 2015 alone, the city of Rotterdam produced 394.000 tons of building rubble. After being transported to a recycling facility this mixed-mineral waste is crushed and downcycled to filler material in landscaping and backfilling processes. Soft Rubble investigates mechanisms of both production and loss of value in the context of the fragile existence of raw matter on the verge of becoming mineral waste. It does so in the form of a construction process that positions building waste as building material.

To build the first prototype of Soft Rubble, 5 people filled 12 tons of building rubble into 4 bags in 8 hours.

The building team including Lisa Machemer, Charlélie Flamant, Matilde Losi, Daniel Parnitzke and Charly Blödel built the first prototype at Van Berkel Bouwstoffen & Transport, a building rubble recycling facility in Eindhoven on June 13th, 2020.

Soft Rubble is a tarpaulin construction system comprised of differently shaped textile containers made of 250g Polyethylene sheet. In a manual process, these reusable textile elements are filled with crushed building rubble to form rigid yet flexible stone walls. Any number of these containers can be combined and filled to create a variety of spatial configurations site-specific to local context and materiality. Preserving the porous material state of building rubble, Soft Rubble becomes a tool of activation to engage in both a physical and abstract manner with the changing value of our material surroundings.

The three-metre tall bags were produced by hand at Zeilmakerij Van Doorn in the Rotterdam Harbour.

Soft Rubble bags are made out of 250g Polyethylene sheet with nylon seams, reinforced with a polyester strap.

»While construction industries extract natural resources from the existing natural landscape in a process of gradual depletion, man-made material conglomerates are simultaneously reverted to the same landscape. As they are filled back into the ground, the natural landscape we quarry turns into a man-made landscape that stays untouched. Why do we quarry one landscape, while we stay blind to the other?«

Soft Rubble is a master thesis project developed in the Social Design Department at the Design Academy Eindhoven in 2020 with the support of the mentors Brecht Duijf , Stéphane Barbier Bouvet, Nadine Botha and Henriëtte Waal under the former head of department Jan Boelen.

On Quarrying A Man-Made Landscape is the written master thesis that accompanies the thesis project Soft Rubble.