In the beginning of 2020 an opportunity arose to inhabit another location in the neighborhood. While the farmhouse was already sold to a commercial developer and we observed the first signs of its transformation, an empty store space in the shopping center of Terwijde winkelcentrum surrounding the farmhouse was offered to the Travelling Farm Museum team. We took this chance and moved in the space so we can remain close to the neighbors and continue our work with them. Due to its location, we see many advantages in remaining in this space to explore different rhythms and cultivate other types of interaction with the neighbors. We initially intended to use the space also for more collective and social connections, but due to the pandemic this was not always possible indoors, so when conditions permitted we held our activities with social aspects safely outdoors. We realised early into the pandemic time that it would be interesting to navigate the new conditions of accessing a store and the processes that could take place in and around it.
First of all, the depot became the place that could hold the Travelling Farm Museum safely, her parking spot when she wasn’t on tour. Secondly, the depot became a space to keep building the collection and supporting the Travelling Farm Museum tours and a working space. Furthermore, what was quite valuable was that we had a sizable amount of space to try out new installations and cultivation techniques. So it became a place of storing, working, gathering, experimenting, showcasing and a departure point for our tours. The use of the shop window and the existence of the mobile installation visible to the outside ignited various interactions. We share messages, plants, different artifacts and materials collected throughout our project in the shop window.
The depot houses workshops, pedagogical experiments, cultivation to showcase different ways of growing, an aquaponics system, hosting the distribution of edible plants, storage and organization of the collection, distribution of goods and agricultural products and a kids’ creative corner. Always in collaboration with likeminded souls, examples of this are a 2020 built aquaponics window installation developed in collaboration with Faisol Iskandar of IMWU (Indonesian Migrant Workers Union Netherlands), enabling to cultivate food without owning land. Here, the harvested seeds of neighbor Mr. Lin are nurtured and ever-growing, and gives house to cross-pollination with e.g. Stekkers and MicroOrganics.
Find the depot at Ella Fitzgeraldplein 4, 3543 EP Utrecht.