Sheila Kennedy and the Here/There Studio Make Portable Infrastructure for Developing World
Sheila Kennedy, Berkeley - RUPP Visiting Professor of Architecture
Sheila Kennedy, Berkeley- RUPP Visiting Professor of Architecture and the ARCH 202/03 Studio: Matthew Au, Erica Brett, Harry Barmon Catterns, Rex Crabb, Soo Ok Han, Yan Huang, Carlos Martinez-Horta, Sean Ostro, Baxter Smith, Julia Solano, Phirak Suon, Page Alvarez, Drew McPherson, Robert Rose, Jonathan Chinen, and Nicholas Merrill
As part of Sheila Kennedy's program as a recipient of the Berkeley-Rupp Prize, she presented an exhibition of her work along with a public lecture at the College of Environmental Design. She also taught an interdisciplinary workshop.
The workshop/studio known as "Here/There" (ARCH 202/03) brought UC Berkeley students from computation, architectural design, engineering, and city planning together and exposed them to a series of hands-on design workshops exploring new urban infrastructure. Using soft materials—from paper to wood to bio-plastic—the group developed open-source digital fabrication techniques and created adaptable prototypes such as: pop-up solar streetlights, soft refrigeration kits for bicycle vendors, and public benches that collected and cleaned fresh water.
The idea was to design portable infrastructure "Here" (at home) for people "There" (in the developing world). The concept created by the students was to design useful, portable objects made out of simple materials that could be fabricated by people using local materials and hand tools. An important concept of the open sourced design was that people could make the infrastructure but could also modify it to adapt to their local needs.
These prototypes were exhibited at UC Berkeley. Viewers had the opportunity to explore and interact with the various prototypes the studio had built. After the exhibit, fabrication kits were shared with NGOs and the public online to help foster the implementation of the prototypes designed during the studio.