Living Concrete::Carrot City – creating an urban agriculture

This evening I attended a buzz-worthy event at Parsons New School of Design. It was the first time I went to this space and thought it was pretty nice. This was an opening reception with passed, vegetarian hors d’ vors and mixed drinks created using Tuthilltown Hudson Valley Corn Whiskey. There was also a demonstration kitchen, beer & wine and a really cool table with some molecular gastronomy creations that tickled my taste-buds and peaked my interest.

There where lots of folks in attendance with a great balance in the crowd of young and old. The common thread seemed to be eco-chic throughout though. The main focus of this gathering was the coming together of several schools to present ideas for creating an urban agriculture and to kick off what will be over two months of free public lectures during brown bag lunch events every Tuesday and a lecture series on Wednesday evenings at Parsons Design Center beginnig Today and ending on December 15th.  Although I was mostly uninspired by the products they had on display that are the current “tools of the urban agriculture” which included long time standards such as a rain barrel and stacked hydroponic devices, there where a couple notables including the whoolypocket (which I have posted about in the past) and simple re:use of the construction grade bags that hold a yard of materials filled with soil and planted. These bags are relatively new to the construction trades and have handles so they may be picked up by a truck with a hydraulic arm and hook. Although this is not all that innovative I think it could have some potentially profound affects on the transient/transportable garden (which was a theme explored in a couple of the design proposals as well).

The design side of the event is what really got my juices flowing. There where lots of interesting ideas presented on the various gator-boards hung through out the two galleries. It is such a wonderful thing to be in the midst of so many smart, compassionate people who are determined to create more food and green spaces in their urban environments. I look forward to attending as many of the Wednesday evening lectures as possible. As a side note, there was an interesting announcement that was made during the evening that a new endeavor is about to take place in the city called Farm School NYC which will be offering New Yorkers classes  in urban agriculture. These classes will be given in community gardens, regional farms, parks, horticultural gardens and other outdoor spaces throughout the city. Students may take one off classes or sign up for a two-year certificate program. It looks like a really worth while endeavor and will surely bring a great deal of knowledge and sustainability to the city and it’s residents.

 

For more info and a full schedule for Living Concrete::Carrot City please visit their web site: http://www.newschool.edu/parsons/subpage.aspx?id=55952

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