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EARTHSCAPE Wins 2012 Green GOOD DESIGN Award for Its Medical Herbman Cafe Project

Landscape design studio, EARTHSCAPE has won a 2012 Green GOOD DESIGN Award in the Research/Technology category for the MHCP - Medical Herbman Cafe Project.

The celebrated Green GOOD DESIGN™ Award, presented annually by the Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design and The European Centre of Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies, awards those who show excellence in product, Architecture, and Landscape design across a number of categories. Green GOOD DESIGN indentifies and emphasizes the world's most important examples of sustainable design and to develop a public awareness program to the international general public about which companies are doing the best job in sustainable design for our world environments.

ABOUT MHCP Herbman Keeps Traveling

Description from Creatives at EARTHSCAPE.

MHCP is a project that travels to different locales like a circus, growing a little with each stop. Wherever we go, we build a human-shaped field called “Herbman,” through which we educate visitors about the relationship between humans and nature. MHCP is a environmental project in part by the landscape design studio Earthscape. We treat all the project details and production as design elements. The project expands as Herbman travels around the world, carrying his luggage in a single shipping container. He will meet many people at his various destinations, gaining knowledge and growing bigger and stronger as he goes. Herbman carries his trunk (the container) as he travels, delivering dreams to children and teaching good health to all. This is the vision of our project. His trips may be irregular, but he will keep on traveling forever.

Project Background - A Sustainable Program
Earthscape, the studio that launched MHCP, had the opportunity in 2001 to participate in a volunteer project to construct playgrounds in the Pakistani town of Drosh. While working on the project, we observed how the children faced tense social conditions, the threat of violence, and abject poverty on a daily basis. The strange fortune to be working during 9/11 also reemphasized the importance of humanitarian work for our team. Equally impressive to the harshness of their social surroundings was how close the children lived to nature. This relationship played a large role in Herbmanʼs conceptual development. Herbman educates visitors about the distance between humans and nature. Herbman is a symbol of the nature and plants that we consume on a daily basis to stay healthy. The project seeks to rethink the relationship between humans and nature, making it a healthy one once again. Proceeds from MHCP are used to fund Herbmanʼs next trip, and used for activities to benefit children such as building playgrounds, as well as other activities to bring good health to the world.

KEEP TRAVELLING: After staying in one spot for a determined length of time, Herbman packs his belongings into a shipping container, and heads to his next destination. The MHCP project consists of a dialogue with nature—as symbolized by herbs and their uses—as well as exchanges with a variety of people and the stories born out of these exchanges.

HERBMAN: His entire body covered in herbs, Herbman stretches out the ground and faces toward the sky. His body becomes a giant map, on which herbs native to the region are planted in locations that indicate what effect they have on the human body. Herbs native to the region where Herbman travels are planted on his body, resulting in different herbs—and a different Herbman experience—at each exhibit location.

MHCP CONTAINER: The sea-ready container that forms the basic space, as well as other materials, interior items, and accessories all use recycled or reused parts. The MHCP project advances as it moves through various locales in Japan and throughout the world. The interior of the container acquires new materials and gifts from the locales to which it travels, and evolves with each place it visits, turning into a gallery space where memories of its travels are exhibited.

CAFE: A cafe, adjoined to Herbman, serves as a space for teaching visitors about the effects of herbs and giving them a chance to try them out. The container that carries Herbman’s belongings becomes the café space, and from it we offer drinks and food made with the herbs harvested from Herbman. The café’s menu changes at each location—different herbal teas made from different local herbs, and new recipes for local dishes taught to us by the people we meet. By allowing visitors to not only look at herbs but also consume them directly, we promote awareness of the multi-faceted connections between nature and humans.


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