Plants on the Move
Workshop and Exhibition Centre
Guided tours, specified route patterns and focussed material, constitute the large majority of today’s cultural establishments. Led by an interest in the philosophical thoughts of John Locke and his theories on Tabula Rasa, this project forms part of a wider vision to re-ignite a seemingly forgotten practice of discovery and intuitive learning.
Nestled among the Birch and Populus trees at Kew Gardens, the Plants on the Move Workshop and Exhibition Centre is the inaugural project in a masterplan which sees Kew’s economic botany collection distributed into purpose built experiential facilities throughout the gardens. Focussing on the ancient methods of Paper Birch bark and Populus canoe construction, the centre enables visitors to both gain an appreciation of the craft, while also experience the resulting products on the newly introduced River Vista.
The form has been generated from a detailed study into natural systems, and in particular, Slime Mould (natures epitomic of Tabula Rasic learning). Here, a discovery of a volumetric tensegral system within the cytoskeleton of cells facilitated the development of an overall structural typology.