Designed by: Beverly Choe, Harushi Ochiai, Ma Sushuang, Zhand Shiqi
Economic and Social Mission:
Local Kitchen is a mobile home and pavilion for two chefs to engage with the regional culture, agriculture and cuisine of rural Japan.
The chefs will travel to a set of cities which are in need of economic growth, spending 2-3 weeks in each location. Upon arrival, they will open their cafe doors to the local communities. While meeting and cooking with people and chefs, they will learn about local cooking traditions and ingredients. Their stay will culminate in a cooking competition for 3 citizens, in which the contestants will be charged with the task of innovating a new dish which reflects the local culture and ingredients of the area.
The year will conclude at a final competition in Tokyo, in which all the local contestants will compete. This will give the winners and their towns exposure prior to the Tokyo Olympics, hopefully resulting in increased tourism for their towns.
The design reflects the efficiency, openness, flexibility of Japanese culture. Local Kitchen is delivered to each town as a compact container which measures 3x3x3 meters. However, a large, cloud-like canopy extends laterally to define the gathering area for the community. Similarly, the boxlike container expands and opens to engage the community and the surrounding landscape. The expandable panel system can be adjusted to create a variety of spaces and relationships to each specific site which is selected.
The canopy is comprised of a double membrane system, similar in technology to inflatable stadium roofs, and it is inflated with air. However, the membrane is made of a plant- based lignin product which offers good UV protection. The thickness of the roof can vary according to the weather conditions by adjusting the cables which hold the two sides together. The shadows cast by the canopy can be altered. An a sunny day, the cloud can thicken, increasing the protection of the canopy. On a cloudy day, the the cables might be tightened, resulting in a thinner cloud.
The container houses a kitchen, toilet room, storage, and a flexible space which can serve as the living, dining and sleeping space. Panels extend from the box to define layers of space which create a gradation from private to public.
Summary of goals:
-Innovation of local cuisines
-Advocacy for the use of local ingredients and sustainable agricultural practices
-Economic catalyst for the development of Agro-tourism to depressed areas of Japan- economic equilibrium