Fish, plants, bacteria, light, water, expanded clay and electronics.
Ken Rinaldo (American) & Amy Youngs (American)
Farm Fountain is a system for growing edible and ornamental fish and plants in a constructed, indoor ecosystem. Based on the concept of aquaponics, this hanging garden fountain uses a simple pond pump, along with gravity to flow the nutrients from fish waste through the plant roots. The plants and bacteria in the system serve to cleanse and purify the water for the fish.
This project is an experiment in local, sustainable agriculture and recycling. It utilizes 2-liter plastic soda bottles as planters and continuously recycles the water in the system to create a symbiotic relationship between edible plants, fish and humans. The work creates an indoor healthy environment that also provides oxygen and light to the humans working and moving through the space. The sound of water trickling through the plant containers creates a peaceful, relaxing waterfall. The Koi and Tilapia fish that are part of this project also provide a focus for relaxed viewing.
The plants we are currently growing include lettuces, cilantro, mint, basil, tomatoes, chives, parsley, mizuna, watercress and tatsoi. The Tilapia fish in this work are also edible and are a variety that has been farmed for thousands of years in the Nile delta.
Farm Fountain is a collaborative project by artists Ken Rinaldo and Amy Youngs. We hope you will be inspired to create one yourself. Please visit our illustrated “How-To” pages to see how we made our home version and join our free online forum to share your ideas.
Ken Rinaldo is an artist, theorist / author creating interactive installations that blur the boundaries between organic and inorganic matter and focused on the co-evolution between living and evolving technological cultures. His works are influenced by living systems theories, interspecies communication, artificial life research, and the idea of emergent properties and deals with ecological issues often overlooked in favor of technological progress. Rinaldo’s works have been commissioned and presented nationally & internationally at the Vancouver Olympics; Canada, World Ocean Museum; Russia, Itau Museum; Brazil, Biennial Electronic Arts; Australia, Te Papa Museum in New Zealand, MIT, Transmediale; Berlin, Arco; Spain, Kiasma Museum; Finland, Museum Contemporary Art; Chicago. Recipient of first prize for Avida 3.0 Spain and an Award of Distinction at Ars Electronica in Austria for the Augmented Fish Reality Rinaldo has been featured on TV internationally and reviewed broadly in Art and Electronic Media books such as; Edward Shanken, Art + Science; Steve Wilson, Digital Art; Christiane Paul, NY Times and Wired Magazine. http://kenrinaldo.com
Amy M. Youngs creates biological art, interactive sculptures and digital media works that explore the complex relationship between technology and our changing concept of nature and self. Topics of interest include: interactions with plants and animals, technological nature follies, constructed ecosystems and seeing through the eyes of machines. Youngs has exhibited her works nationally and internationally at venues such as the Te Papa Museum in New Zealand, the Trondheim Electronic Arts Centre in Norway and the Tweed Museum in Duluth, MN. She has lectured widely, at venues such as the Australian Center For the Moving Image in Australia and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She received her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1999 and is currently an Associate Professor of Art at the Ohio State University. http://hypernatural.com/