ELIOOO. GROW YOUR FOOD
VISION: The ultimate object of design is information. As a designer I display quantities and dimensions; I organize briefs, I explain procedures. Sometimes this has more to do with storytelling than with technical drawings. These stories and their illustrations are traditionally given to artisans who, in their workshops, mills, or labs, actually turn them into concrete things: objects. But as a designer, I like to design things that anyone can make. A good design today can turn the world population into the biggest creative industry ever known — a crowd factory of sustainable solutions. Anyone can be the manufacturer of the products I design.
WHAT: ELIOOO is an instruction book about how to build a hydroponic system to grow plants, herbs, or vegetables in your apartment, using IKEA components.
ABOUT THE BOOK: The book will contain hand drawn illustrations, showing you everything you need to know about how to build and run ELIOOO step by step. It will be a printed soft cover book, measuring 21 x 14.5 cm and counting 150-200 pages. It will contain instructions for about how to build and run six different types and sizes of hydroponic devices as described below and as shown in the prototypes depicted here. These may, however, look slightly different due to improvements and changes that are made after testing.
ELIOOO #4: Is a non-circulating hydroponic device able to host up to four pots. It is ideal for growing aromatic herbs on your kitchen counter, window, or table so that you can grow your favorite fresh herbs next to where they will be used. This system avoids the use of electricity to oxygenate water.
ELIOOO #8: Is a non-circulating hydroponic device able to host up to eight pots. It is ideal for aromatic herbs and leaf vegetables. ELIOOO #8 is designed to cultivate larger kitchen herbs and to allow easy indoor vertical farming. This module can be freely hung on the wall and, if replicated, it generates a suspended indoor “green wall” at a very affordable price. This system avoids the use of electricity to oxygenate water.
ELIOOO #15: Is a circulating hydroponic device able to host up to fifteen pots. ELIOOO #15 is ideal for aromatic herbs and leaf vegetables. It consists of two ELIOOO #8, interconnected with a small water pump, for those who prefer the traditional circulating hydroponic systems. Nutrients will be distributed with a micro dripping system. This system requires the use of electricity.
ELIOOO #30: Is a circulating hydroponic device able to host up to thirty pots. It is ideal for aromatic herbs and leaf vegetables of all sorts. The system consists of three grow trays connected at a distance of 45 cm from each other. They are suspended with two wall uprights and brackets above a 25 liter reservoir that is covered with a seven pot grow tray. The overall dimensions of the installation are 45 x 160 x 29,7 cm.
ELIOOO #30 is ideal for larger vertical indoor farming installations that can be combined with a fully domestic environment, or even integrated with kitchen furniture. The modularity of the system can be combined to generate production columns. This system requires the use of electricity.
ELIOOO #30 Mob.: Is a circulating hydroponic device able to host up to 30 pots. It is ideal for aromatic herbs and leaf vegetables of all sorts with the possibility to use the reservoir on the bottom to grow tomatoes, eggplants, or cucumbers. The overall dimensions are 50 x 50 x 160 cm.
The system consists of three trays vertically connected at a distance of max 45 cm from each other. These are suspended with two wall uprights and brackets above a 25 liter reservoir covered with a max seven pot grow tray. The system is attached to two boards fixed in an “L” configuration, and provided with heavy duty wheels. This allows the system to move easily to reach perfect indoor or outdoor exposure. ELIOO #30 introduces the concept of mobile farming for perfect tuning. This system requires the use of electricity. It can, however, be operated with a pump connected to a photovoltaic panel available in most hardware stores.
ELIOOO DESK: Is a non-circulating hydroponic desk device able to host up to eight pots. It is ideal for growing aromatic herbs and leaf vegetables in your workplace. The desk is made with the combination of large reservoirs that suspend the table top, which is designed to have ELIOOO #8 plugged into it. The bottom of one reservoir can be used to store little gardening tools. This system avoids the use of electricity to oxygenate water.
WHY HYDROPONICS: Hydroponics is a clean, sustainable, and efficient way to grow vegetables using water instead of soil. Hydroponics has enormous advantages compared to traditional agricultural methods. It uses only 10% of the water needed with traditional agriculture, allowing for higher production in smaller spaces. Plants get nourishment directly from a nutrient solution mixed into the water. Consequently, the risk of pests present in the soil is avoided and plants receive the exact nourishment needed for optimal growth. With hydroponics you do not have to water your plants; you can maintain ideal conditions for growth, without worrying about watering and getting dirty.
I think we need to find new ways to assemble what we already have, rather than to produce new stuff. This is the reason why I have decided to design ELIOO using IKEA components. IKEA is a quality supplier available almost everywhere in the world. Everybody knows where to find an IKEA store and how much the components will cost.
With ELIOOO you will be able to have quick access to indoor hydroponics and start growing your own food right away. You will receive a full spectrum of options according to your needs and possibilities. You can build one hydroponic device at a price far more convenient and affordable than any other hydroponic system available in the market. But, most of all, ELIOOO can inspire you to develop your own system and start playing around with the different setups as I suggest in the book.
If design is a recipe, designer are Chefs. I want to make a recipe book about something good that anyone can bake at home.
My name is Antonio Scarponi, I am an architect and designer. I am the founder of Conceptual Devices www.conceptualdevices.com. Conceptual Devices produce tools and spaces to engage social innovation. In 2008 I was awarded with the Curry Stone Design Prize (www.currystonedesignprize.com) and this year I was nominated for the Katerva Sustainability award (www.katerva.org). This is what I do, this is what I believe.
I have worked with urban agriculture in several projects already. I think this is a key issue that needs to be addressed in order to face the challenges of our time. My approach is empowering individuals, showcasing simple solutions that anyone can trigger.
I am also developing other urban agriculture projects at different scales using aquaponics. For example, this device was designed to produce one meal a day. It is called Malthus: http://www.conceptualdevices.com/2011/06/malthu...
This is a larger installation designed for rooftop farming able to produce fish and vegetables for four families of four, year round: http://www.conceptualdevices.com/2012/02/hedron...
My work has been published, among others, in the following blogs and magazines: Abitare, ArchDaily, BoingBoing, TrendHunter, Core77, Design Boom, Domus, GOOD, Gizmodo, Inhabitat, Like Cool, SwissMiss, TreeHugger, Wired IT, Wired UK.
This campaign will help support my office and its staff to carry more research projects like these and help them to bring them to the curious, hungry, and eco-conscious public.
This project will be possible with the fundamental contribution and commitment of these extraordinary team members:
Daniel Frei, coaching, online/off line support, enthusiasm.
Amber Hickey, text editor, experience and boldness.
Stefano Massa, video editing and other thousand unique things.
Jimena Quintana, marketing, feet on the ground and realistic planning.
Monica Tarocco, photography, poetry and a lot patience.
This project will be completed in collaboration with IKEA Switzerland. They will provide the IKEA components needed to fulfill the rewards offered.
READY TO GROW? SUPPORT!
So if you want to start growing your own vegetables, get ELIOOO!
It will show you step by step how to build and run a simple hydroponic system using some inexpensive IKEA boxes. You will be able to start growing plants in your kitchen, on your balcony, in your living room, or even in your office - like I do.
To start right away, ELIOO´s instructions and operation manual can be shipped to you with a beginner growing kit together with all the IKEA boxes you will need so that you do not have to worry about where to find the single hydroponic parts and drive out to an IKEA store.
The book will be officially presented at the Venice Biennale of Architecture at the Italian Pavilion during the closing ceremony some time in the Weekend of 23-24-25 of November 2012. My dream would be to deliver my perks before Christmas. However I am not sure this will be possible. A gift certificate that announce the book you want to donate to third parties will be sent to you.
In any case my priority is to make a good and valuable quality product. I'd prefer focus on that, rather than to rush with Christmas orders. If you donate I will make sure a card will be sent to you as proof of your gift.
IF THE CAMPAIGN IS SUCCESSFUL
Independently from the success of this campaign, the book will be completed and the perks will be delivered even if the goal set at the beginning is not reached. For this reason I have decided to publish the book using digital printing. If this campaign reaches the goal I would also be able to cover my expenses and the expenses of the people who are helping me with this project, and execute a high quality book.
IF THE CAMPAIGN IS MORE THAN SUCCESSFUL
We will set up a micropublishing company that could carry different editions of this book (even in different languages) and produce other similar projects in the near future. The micropublishing company would become a branch of my design practice. In this way, I would be able to reinvest in marketing ELIOOO and support the internal research we are carrying out at Conceptual Devices in the field of urban agriculture at an even bigger scale.
I think this would open new possibilities in the way we perceive design, products, and the way they are manufactured. I do not want to produce more items; I want to tell people how to assemble what is already around in the simplest way, and make sure they have fun. This project is a tool to build a community around these topics.