A fully transparent kitchen – Do we need it? | MVRDV

A fully transparent kitchen

A fully transparent kitchen; what does that mean? Well, it means that everything that we keep inside our cupboards that are overhead or below the counter or anywhere else in the kitchen would be visible! Yes, everything. MVRDV has come up with ‘ Infinity Kitchen ‘ for a satellite event Kitchen Home Project at the 2016 Venice Biennale that focuses on the living and home environment. Weng Ling of the Beijing Centre for the Arts (BCA) is responsible for coming up with this project; it also displays works by Kengo Kuma and Au Yeung Ying Chai, a Hong Kong-based media artist. The Kitchen Home Project on display at the Università IUAV di Venezia Ca’ Tron can be seen until September 30, 2016. The design by MVRDV explores the possibility of how we would deal with our kitchens once everything is on display, and there is literally nowhere that one can hide any mess or clutter. Everything from counters, shelving, cabinets, and faucets would be made of glass. Apparently, this all-embracing transparency will make users highly aware of how they keep their kitchen, what foods they choose to keep in their kitchens, and ultimately, in their bodies and heighten the entire culinary experience. “The Infinity Kitchen wants to make better cuisine, better food preparation practices and it wants to raise awareness for the one room that we all rely so heavily on on, and the processes that go on inside of it. How much food do we have hidden away? How much waste is really being created? Is the kitchen really as clean as we like to think it is? But [the Infinity Kitchen] also wants to do one main thing: celebrate food and cooking.” “If we imagine everything is transparent clear and clean, doesn’t it mean that the only thing that is colorful and visible is our food,” says MVRDV co-founder Winy Maas. “Doesn’t it then imply that we are encouraged to love the food, in that way, and that maybe it even becomes more healthy, if not sexy?”

“I see this as part of a wider dream, this kitchen. it is part of an environment, if not a city, that is transparent and therefore accessible, imagine if not only our kitchens were transparent, but the walls through to the neighbor and the next neighbor even. this would create infinite perspectives in our cities. it would make within our claustrophobic environments possibly a view, into the direction of the mountains or the sea.” The project would make us aware of wastage, it aims at eliminating the possibility of anything unnecessary, and for food to become a celebration.  MVRDV seeks to challenge the kitchen industry but what I can imagine looking at this kitchen is precious hours of our lives devoted to cleaning the entirety of this space each day, just to make it look squeaky clean. The kitchen is unquestionably fascinating, and the fact that MVRDV has not only thought of but made possible something that couldn’t have been thought of, must be celebrated. Conceptually it stands for everything that MVRDV has intended it to be. However, do our lives really need this kind of transparency?; or will this new technological intervention instead create further problems for users? Nevertheless, the project is sure to inspire further design intervention in the industry.

By: Sahiba Gulati

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