research and exhibition at MIT 2011
December 29th, 2011


microBUG is part of Boston Chapter of Disobedience exhibition and is inspired by close collaboration with Julie Kepes Stone while researching histories of urban gardening in Boston. The design of this part of installation is conceived with the help of Joan Chen, student of the class 4.303, “Art, Architecture, and Urbanism in Dialogue”. The microgreens-models for edible plants- are provided by Farming Turtles and with the kind help of Lauri Roberts.

Joan Chen:
This installation project draws from two inspirations. The first is the idea of creating an installation for child’s play—too often we become accustomed the vocabularies of the adulthood that we forget the many possibilities of the child’s world—thus I propose an installation created at the child’s height and scale. This is relevant as a tool for discourse on urban issues because it redefines scale and audience: for whom are the public spaces designed? Do they inadvertently exclude children and the handicapped?

The second is a specific instance of in Boston’s own urban history that relates to disobedience and dissent, the theme of the class (4.303, “Art, Architecture, and Urbanism in Dialogue”); I have chosen to study the Southwest Corridor Park and the community gardens it encompasses. The area was cleared for the proposed I-95 Inner Belt during the country’s peak of highway projects, only to be terminated in 1969 due to extensive community protests; the need to stitch  together the urban scar left by mass demolition was met by rerouting the MBTA Orange Line and building public green space. Specially, the community gardens along the Southwest Corridor Park stitches the place together in a form that combines food production and neighborhood renewal. It also relates to ongoing discussion on urban agriculture, food, etc.

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