PARSNIP METABOLISM

YEAR: 2015
PROFESSOR: RYAN JOHNS
TEAM: ANDREW MACMILLAN
LOCATION: PRINCETON SOA BOOTCAMP

2153 CE:

Ground Soil is contaminated, unsafe for food production. Parsnip, like other root vegetables still grows, but has become inedible, now finding use as a building material.

However, organic material like this has decay issues. Outer layers rot, erode and crumble, or worse fall prey to mold becoming health hazards over time. Raising the structures, helps to keep them away from ground elements and flooding, the primary cause of the mold. The Second Potato Blight taught us that. 

We tried to use potato for years, but it was so toxic. Just a little bit of moisture, and your house would kill you in your sleep. Parsnip at least would wait until you were awake.

The shaded interiors would last longer than the exteriors, but eventually every structure would fail. The rot and mold created inhospitable, and unstable conditions as the home itself metabolized. We got good at getting out, but every now and again we lose a few.

Then, relocation, we pack what little we have, dissemble the precious substructure, and walk along The Wall, following the tuber fields, planted some years ago on our last rotation. We resettle, build new parsnip enclosures, drying out the field in the process. Then, we live, and wait until we must move again across the arid desert, bounded by the wall. We wait for the metabolism to come again.

Former connector towers dot the landscape, monoliths of a place once lived, appearing like some vague but disconcerting dream...


Inspired by the utopic metabolism of Kisho Kurokawa & other Japanese Metabolists and the irony of Avant-Garde Italians Superstudio and Archi-zoom, Parsnip Metabolism explores these works through the lens of the finite and nomadic experience of a speculative dystopian future told in a documentary format.