Eco Farm_A Satirical Statement
EcoFarm Meat Market is based in Lebreton Flats, Ottawa, an expansive Brownfield site abutting the central downtown core. The market’s adjacency to newly thriving neighbourhoods, as well as its numerous connections to public transit, will allow the market to profit over the next ten years.
Once food production is stable enough to afford a surplus, mobile units will begin driving out to communities with little or no access to fresh meat and fish products. Satellite markets will be temporarily established in sectors of these neighbourhoods currently farthest from grocery stores, and within easy walking access for the majority of customers.
The base marketplace is fully self sustainable, solely relying on natural resources to propagate a constantly producing cycle. The utilized technology required for the process, such as solar and wind energy harvesting, anaerobic digestion, and hydroponic systems are all displayed throughout the complex for educational purposes.
The project was composed as a satirical statement on the abundance of resources necessary for meat production. To believe that the EcoFarm Meat Market proposal would function effectively in Ottawa is extremely optimistic. While the idea of a self-sustainable meat market may seem achievable, the process of meat production is extremely complicated and resource-heavy, as conveyed in the shown axonometric drawings.
For the current proposal, solely feeding the surrounding neighbourhoods of Hintonburg and West Centretown, the Marketplace requires over 200 electric generators, the guarantee of energy production via wind and light, in addition to enough water supply to sustain over 13,000 animals. It would be a colossal undertaking to ensure this cycle is constantly operating smoothly, along with the illegal slaughter of animals on the same site they are being sold to customers. Therefore, the “fictional” message of this project is presented in the aesthetic of the model and drawings, using bright, playful colours and hand sketches to explain the imaginative standpoint of the program.
Who influences you graphically?
It’s hard to pinpoint exactly who influences my graphic style, as I find myself interested in all types of architectural drawings. I love being able to see the work coming out of different architecture schools all over the world, specifically the fantastical drawings of the Bartlett and Taubman College. I try to create a particular graphic language for each of my projects which best communicates its themes. Still, I’ve been told I have a recognizable drawing style throughout my work.
Recently, I’ve been particularly interested in the work of Cedric Price, and made his work the focus of my M.Arch. thesis. I love the imaginative yet thoroughly conceived nature of his projects, and his unique style of representation. He intended his drawings to relate to everyone, not just architects, by animating them in a cartoon-like manner. His projects tend to critique society, industry, and current architecture, which is something I often do in my academic projects as well.
What is your take on colour?
I always pick a colour scheme, when beginning a project, that I anticipate will best convey the themes of that work. For EcoFarm, the bright, playful colours were chosen to present the fictional and satirical message of the project, in combination with the hand-sketch and layered graphic aesthetic.
I believe that colour is a critical aspect of architectural drawing, as it creates a sense of organization and consistency throughout a project. For this project I maintained specific colours for all equipment, all building components, and all phases of the ecosystem. Utilizing colour allows me to layer the drawings so that the project can be followed throughout various formats. I love seeing how colours interact with each other when layered in different ways.
What is the effect and purpose of the use or absence of texture?
Similar to how I use colour, I tend to leave my drawings “flat” in order to express the imaginative narrative of the project. The absence of texture also allows one to read components in the drawing that are layered fairly far back, without being clouded by multiple textures. As this particular project focuses on quantities of equipment and resources, rather than materiality, letting colour guide the drawings better explains the proposal’s message.
What defined the use of the frame within the perspective image?
The images were originally created to be displayed in an exhibition, and therefore I intentionally designed each one as part of the larger composition. Placing each perspective image on an identically dimensioned base enabled a sense of equality between the five views. The two axonometric drawings were printed out at a much larger size, demanding most of the attention, with the perspectives supporting the proposal. The identical framing of the perspective images also ensured that they will be viewed equally upon any digital or physical reproduction.
How important is the diagram as a tool for communication?
Always being a very logical designer, I often use diagrams to convey the processes and arguments of my work. I find that graphically explaining the preliminary research and design development allows for a better understanding of the project, both by viewers and myself. I like introducing both qualitative and quantitative information into my drawings through diagrammatic imagery, which communicates another layer of the project and reinforces my design decisions.
Courtney is an Intern Architect at Gow Hastings Architects in Toronto, Canada. She recently completed her Master of Architecture degree at the Azrieli School of Architecture & Urbanism at Carleton University, where she earned her Bachelor of Architectural Studies two years prior. Throughout her studies, she developed interests in sustainability and the mobility of the built environment. Her M.Arch. thesis examined how architecture might continue to flourish through society’s dependence on digital technology, winning the Maxwell Taylor Scholarship for innovation in building technologies. Her graduate studies also allowed her a semester abroad in Lisbon, Portugal, where she participated in a studio taught by Barbas Lopes Arquitectos. Courtney is interested in the evolution of human behaviour with technology’s progression, and enjoys learning how this continuously modifies the needs of architectural environments.