Living Concrete/Carrot City: An Exhibition Platform as a Growing Medium

  • Nevin Cohen The New School for Public Engagement
  • Radhika Subramaniam Parsons The New School for Design
Keywords: Civic Agriculture, Exhibition Platform, Pedagogy, Urban Agriculture


The authors of this paper co-curated Living Concrete/Carrot City, an exhibition at The New School during the Fall 2010 semester that explored the relationship between urban agriculture and the city, and the roles of farmers and gardeners, designers, artists, activists, academics, and others in integrating food and agriculture into everyday city life. This reflective essay discusses the genesis of the exhibition, our curatorial decisions, and the interactions among students, faculty, and community members that we observed within the gallery. The project supported university goals of cross-disciplinary and public scholarship, created a space for members of the urban agriculture community to learn from each other, and demonstrated the potential for an exhibition platform to serve as a vehicle for liberal arts and design schools to engage in food systems research, teaching, design practice, and public engagement. While the essay focuses on the specific instance of this exhibition and interdisciplinary collaboration, it suggests some implications for consideration by other urban institutions of higher education.


Author Biographies

Nevin Cohen, The New School for Public Engagement
Assistant Professor, Environmental Studies, The New School for Public Engagement.
Radhika Subramaniam, Parsons The New School for Design
Assistant Professor, Art & Design History and Theory; Director and Chief Curator, Sheila C. Johnson Design Center, Parsons The New School for Design.
Food Systems and Higher Education Call Papers