As individuals we often find difficulty in the ability to initiate change within the complex systems that govern our lives, yet, in the 17th century, on the verge of the industrial revolution, Spanish author Miguel Cervantes described a character who took a stand against seemingly invisible giants. His name was Don Quixote de la Mancha.
Today, after centuries of industry wear upon the earth, natural resources and the places we live, we have trouble pinpointing exactly the cause, let alone developing a solution. As the city of Philadelphia strives to become the greenest city by 2015, Futurefarmers looks to the imaginative power of Don Quixote for inspiration for the creation of Soil Kitchen.Upon invitation to propose a project to the city of Philadelphia in alignment with their "Green by 2015" initiative,
Futurefarmers wished to inhabit one of the 54,000 abandoned buildings in this post-industrial American city. We dreamed to put a windmill on top of one of these building and have it power very low energy lightbulbs inside the building to illuminate this underutilized space- an invitation to imagine a future use or to remind of the those who once occupied these spaces. In a chance meeting with former Philadelphia resident, Robert Wuilfe, we were informed that a Don Quixote monument existed on the corner of 2nd and Girard streets. Upon searching the location on Google maps, we found the statue of Don Quixote upon his horse pointing across the street to an abandoned building. With extreme luck and perseverance, the owner of the building and the city of Philadelphia granted us the permission to inhabit this building; a windmill through the entire building, a temporary kitchen, workshop area and a soil testing station.
Dan Allende (English) + Pancho Allende (Spanish)Bi-lingual reading of Chapter 8: The Tilting of the Windmills scene.