The Bittertang Farm

The Bittertang Farm looks forward to a future world full of inventive and playful opportunities. With society’s increased awareness and acceptance of social issues, political issues, and climate change, extreme thinking has become acceptable or even necessary. The Bittertang Farm builds off of the momentum and girth of these new ideas to radically rethink the interactions people have with each other, their surroundings, and their historical roots. One way they stimulate this conversation is by reconsidering the way architecture is materialized and how people, animals, objects, and the variety of living organisms and systems can interact and contribute toward creating a novel vocabulary of architectural elements (living and ossified, seducers and antagonizers, growing and decomposing, primitive and high-tech). The Bittertang Farm has built three inflatable pavilions: a pregnant sugar-oozing piñata, a plush toy collection, a sagging birdcage, a room of wax, an edible environment, and a rotting amphitheater. The Bittertang Farm is the recipient of numerous architectural awards including the 2010 Architectural League Prize, Young Architects distinction, and the award for New Practices from AIA New York in 2013. The Bittertang Farm was a finalist in MoMA PS1’s Young Architects Competition in 2015.

The Living Room

Venue: CCA Academy PermaPark

The Living Room is located within the CCA Academy’s Permapark: a self-sufficient permaculture garden. Inspired by the ways in which permaculture reorganized approaches to farming, the Bittertang Farm reorganizes how architectural materials, forms, and spaces are considered. The Living Room provides space for humans and nature to comfortably intermingle in a thriving cultural ecosystem that evolves, transforms, and promotes collective growth.

The Living Room explores what it means to create an architecture that is living in two senses: through plant matter and also by invoking the spaces of domestic living rooms to create a space of cohabitation. Its perimeter is a fluctuating boundary defined seasonally by plant life as well as solid and porous elements that evoke a clearing in the woods. The columns allow for birds to nest or perch, and the various types of hardwood allow for moss, lichen, and mushrooms to inhabit its creases and cracks. The ground is defined by patterned stonework—the space’s rug, on which various seating types are arranged and which begin to create micro-environments. Each element of the project is an entity in itself with distinct qualities and characteristics that work with other elements in the space Working with raw materials that have been crafted by local artisans—including a chainsaw carver and willow weaver—the project introduces a handcrafted sensibility to the urban environment. 

The Living Room’s silhouette and expressive architectural features make it visible from the street. This form also creates spaces for intimate events, ranging from conversations and performances throughout the Biennial to school activities as an ongoing educational space for the CCA Academy. As The Living Room grows and changes with the seasons it will contribute functionally to the park and serve as a source of biomaterials that will give back to the Permapark’s growing ecology.

Past Works

Being, Storefront for Art and Architecture 30th Anniversary

Buru Buru, A Living Amphitheater