School of Eternal Springtime
Finding the Wild are an art & architecture duo who work on interdisciplinary public art projects. In response to the stiffness of urban environments, their work addresses the need for uncontrolled incidents that deepen bodily connections to the world. Fishing, foraging, frolicking, and feasting, they create performative and spatial experiences that spark dialogue. Their work has been shown across Europe, most notably at Marta Herford, South Explorer Rotterdam, See U Brussels, and POLDRA Viseu.
Climate change and its knock-on environmental effects mean there are extraordinary changes that need to be made if we are to avert catastrophe. By 2050, the global population is expected to reach 9.8 billion, meaning greater stress on food supplies. We need novel solutions to ensure food security and sustainability. Current factory farming practices lead to many undesirable consequences, including large quantities of greenhouse gas emissions, a decrease in water quality and quantity, the loss of biodiversity, and an increased risk of the spread of disease between humans and animals, amongst others. Rainforests are destroyed to make way for soy plantations and oceans are dredged for fishmeal in order to supply large amounts of livestock with protein.
Meanwhile, European farmers are protesting against their risk of bankruptcy. COP26 addressed the need for farmers to greatly reduce their livestock and stop unsustainable practices, such as soil and nutrient mismanagement, which would help to reduce emissions. Governments are now putting these regulations into effect. However, it seems that there is a missing link between policy change and practice: there is no advice or training provided to farmers in order for them to acquire the knowledge necessary for producing alternatives.
Our proposal, ‘School of Eternal Springtime’, addresses the disconnect between government regulation and farming practice. We look to alternative resources, such as protein-rich insects, mushrooms, wetland forestry and rainwater harvesting as ways of generating revenue whilst reducing emissions. These models can increase output whilst helping to feed a hungry population. Our concept is to create a nomadic re-training centre that can move from place to place, coaching farmers about future-proofing their businesses. The aim of our project is therefore to conduct a period of research and development to devise a travelling architecture that could be implemented by the end of the programme.