Networking Nature

Conceptual sketch by Cristiana Favretto

Water network automation and Data Visualization
Networking Nature by Studiomobile.
Year: 2012
Location: Palazzo Bembo, Venice
Typology: Installation for the Venice Architecture Biennale 2012
Strategy: Creating a self sufficient ecosystem where it is impossible to see the dividing line between living machines and artificial organisms
For the Venice Architecture Biennale 2012, Studiomobile explores a future scenario where men are forced to live in an unusual landscape shaped by environmental changes. At present, more than half the world’s population lives and works in a coastal strip 200 kilometres wide, and in the near future sea is expected to characterize even more urban settlements. But not only adaptation is required. Next strategy will be assimilation, an approach characterized by embracing the changing conditions and taking advantage of the resulting opportunities. Frequently, changes perceived as negative open up new possibilities and innovative opportunities.
The ecosystem Networking Nature lives off seawater. Within a glass tank filled with salt water, some solar stills extract fresh water by exploiting the heat produced by small lamps. Seawater evaporates and the steam condenses into fresh water, which is collected in tanks and then supplied.

However, water is not produced in isolated systems under central control. The new model provides for a large ecological infrastructure as well as small local production units connected to a network able to integrate the production of fresh water and to supply it where needed. It’s a Smart Water Network controlled by sensors that read the local lack of water and, through an Arduino board, activate the pumps providing the water where there is a peak of demand. The Smart Water Network will be a layer of the ecological network as well as the Smart Power Grid and the communications network. This strategy not only gives response to the preservation of the environment, but it is also a radically new model that ensures free and democratic access to the resources to everybody.

Studiomobile‘s installations are working living machines where nature and built landscape live in symbiosis. They suggest a future immaginary where it is impossible to see the dividing line between naturalized architecture and plugged nature and between living machines and artificial organisms.

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