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name: no-jardín
type: urban biotope
address: Camino de los Prados, 121 Gijón Spain
gps location: 43.5249, -5.6121
dimensions: 60.00x20.00 meter
start date: 2012-02-15
end date: 2012-03-03
download information: http://blogs1.uoc.es/laboralcentrodearte/
more information: http://blogs1.uoc.es/laboralcentrodearte/

General description

"No-jardín" at LABoral Patio Sur, is an experimental space for the implementation of eco-technologies, metheorological station and cultivation of wild garden with some edible and medicinal plants. It started in 2010 as part of ecoLAB project at LABoral Centro de Arte y Creación Industrial, in Gijón (Asturias). ecoLAB is an experimentation laboratory at the intersection between ecology, art and open electronics. It generates subjectivities and dynamics in relation to the biosphere and its ecosystems. It operates as a node of knowledge that generates education, research and production areas focused on the ecological, social and technological challenges that today’s society is faced with.

ecoLAB is a natural and social system, in which human, vegetable, animal, mineral and liquid elements coexist. A project that applies the methodology of Permaculture used in farming to the sphere of social organisation. This methodology is similar to natural processes and to the primordial relationship that connects the human context with its surroundings. Based on this applied observation of space and on bioregionalism, ecoLAB has become transversally embedded in a contemporary arts institution through the appropriation of a residual space. On several levels of activity, it combines the intelligence of cutting-edge technologies with those of traditional forms of knowledge, sets up processes in search of autonomy in resource and environmental management, and generates other narratives of the environmentt in which we live. ecoLAB is anchored in three ecological registers – the environment, social relations, human subjectivity –, and a system where “the interactions between ecosystems, the mechanosphere and the social and individual Universes of reference run transversally”. In its actions in time, ecoLAB reinvents the concept of the “andecha”, a kind of traditional rotating communal work in Asturian villages, in which everybody works for everybody according to crop cycles and the decisions of the assembly.

Ecological description

Patio Sur is a courtyard that became a waste land after the construction works of the building. Now it is a wild garden, characterised by ruderal vegetation and it ´s located in the limits between the city and the country side.

It is an entropic space, one of those unnoticed places in which nature acts unchecked, which we tend to think of as inert spaces even though they form part of our daily lives. Nevertheless, it has a biotope consisting of brambles, climbing plants, snails and insects that move imperceptibly. The beauty and casual richness of a non-garden is concealed beneath an apparent formal disorder. With the aim of visibilising the stories and secrets that this entropic space hides, ecoLAB has launched a project to monitor Patio Sur through a biodiversity inventory and the deployment of networked temperature, light and humidity sensors. The resulting map of the space will create a conceptual interpretation of non-garden (Patio Sur) in its natural, cultural and spatial aspects, and generate data that, when translated, will offer us the narratives of this non-garden: a spatial reading of the entropy that is analogous to the loss of data in information transmission systems. This first stage of the project will inform the use of the space in accordance with its nature, as well as generating data that will be used in visual arts and musical applications.

The project and design criteria are based on low-cost, easy installation principles and, as far as possible, on the reuse and recycling of pre-existing materials and the goal of autonomy in terms of energy usage. To this end, the team has started to regenerate the Patio Sur biotope, through minimal interventions in the arable space based on the premises of Permaculture. So far, functional experiments have been implemented in the use of eco-technologies for the development of low cost urban agriculture models... cultivation terraces, a system of rainwater collection, and a simple composting system.

Sociological description

It´s a meeting point for a group of artists and activists who exchange information, methods and thecniques on art and ecology. The project offers the community and visitors an urban refuge in which to take part in activities linked to nature and technology. Children and families participated in a collective sowing of varieties of local vegetables, and in games and prototypes created by Susanna Tesconi (Italy/BCN) in the fabLAB, which showed the connection between natural elements and open source technological solutions and the interaction between biological and electronic spheres. In its educational functions, ecoLAB recovers the social nature of knowledge in the sense of something that is constructed collaboratively and generated through artistic action, from DIY (Do It Yourself) to DIT (Do It Together). The idea is to overcome the digital and technological divide and to reestablish and redefine the relationship between participants and their environment.