What: A recipe to make bio-receptive blocks that support natural colonisation or can be pre-populated with alpine plants.
How: Use of spoilt fruit and veg, ice and balloons to make craters, voids and holes in the casting of a porous hypertufa style concrete.
Why: Increase biodiversity and the human-nature connection in urban spaces.
Living blocks is an open-source recipe designed to produce blocks that can support plant and insect life. Using inspiration from the porous structure of rare limestone formations, living blocks uses waste fruit, vegetable and aggregates to produce a similar porous structure in a cement-based alternative.
The project explores the ways in which we can build with nature to increase the biodiversity in cities whilst also developing our connection to nature. Through interviewing experts in ecology, conservation and art, I discovered that in order to increase biodiversity in cities we need to alter the way we build. Currently, cities are built with clean, smooth, regular-shaped surfaces and spaces, with little focus on natural life. Living blocks aims to provide a basic open-source process people can use and adapt to build blocks or other shapes that provide complex, textured, bio-receptive surfaces that could provide rich ecosystems in urban spaces.
Find out more: https://wikifactory.com/+othertodaystudio/living-blocks
“Beautiful, structurally and visually interesting, full of complexity” - Ian Boyd, Artecology