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A catalyst for new cultures of living


Exhibition, curated by Studio Makkink & Bey for IABR, showing works of over 30 designers, architects and artists and showing the results of research by design into resources that can serve as (building) materials and/or food while having a responsible relationship to water use.

Production landscapes

Rotterdam is a low-lying port city in the delta. In times of climate crisis, the city has to face up to acute challenges such as subsidence, water safety, extreme precipitation, heat, and drought. But what about water use?

WATERSCHOOL M4H+ investigates how a range of resources can contribute to building a sustainable and circular learning environment, in order to meet the water challenge and ensure an optimized ecological footprint.

WATERSCHOOL M4H+ shows what a new living and working environment in Rotterdam’s Merwe-Vierhavens (M4H) district could look like if the 6,300 future residents of the area think in terms of sustainable use of raw materials and resources, allowing for the just interaction between all organisms, communities, and their environment.

Adhering to a ‘learning by doing’ approach, the future production landscape M4H blends living and working while it is being designed around the prospective use of five resources. While also gathering and distributing knowledge, WATERSCHOOL M4H+ operates as a test site and a catalyst for the sustainable (re)development of the area.

Five resources

Insects, duckweed, seaweed, wood, and fungi are the five highlighted resources that shape the future of living in M4H, impacting all areas of life.

Starting from the basic needs of the individual and her body, such as nutrition and water use, these resources contribute to a new diet by suggesting the use of alternative and less water-intensive protein sources, and thus a minimized water footprint. And when expanded to dwelling, living, and working, and to energy and water consumption, they also generate new sustainable building materials and energy supplies, while suggesting new types of architecture and cultures of living.

About Studio Makkink & Bey

Studio Makkink & Bey, based in Rotterdam, works in various domains of applied art and includes public space & landscape design, interior design, product design, art, architecture, exhibition design, education and head & air affairs. Their design strategy is to re-appropriate what is already present in the context of an assignment, with a strong emphasis on the process.
Hallenweg area, Atelier NL, Bergmannstraat 76 , Map No. G2
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Wheelchair accessible
Wifi available
Dogs allowed
Toilets available
Visitor mode