Internationally acclaimed artist, designer, and inventor Dror Benshetrit is known for designing a range of projects and products. Human interaction and Nature have taken a turn for the worse with each passing moment in conjunction with production and technology advancements. Studio Dror is at a turning point to reverse a widespread lack of information and consumption trend to establish a ‘New Normal’ across scales — it’s not about what we live with; it’s about who and how.
The Studio’s renewed focus came at an essential time in Dror’s personal life by becoming a father and recognizing society’s widespread interest in the “sharing economy” (e.g., WeWork, Airbnb, Uber, etc.), where everyday people have started to gravitate toward the human connection and getting back together (co-working, co-commuting) rather than being apart.
For example, 80% of the infrastructure needed in India in 2050 has yet to be built — Who will design it? What will it look like? How will it operate? Will the systems we create stop the caustic pressure we put on the infrastructure to reduce environmental negligence or is the damage irreparable?
“Our moral consciousness is the only indelible mark that will determine the true value of nature’s work.”
— Kami Sloan
VENÜ delves deeper into Dror’s ecosophy to get a more comprehensible scope of his holistic lens in the pursuit to unionize us with Nature.
“I grew up in the city all my life and moved to New York, where I had access to a melting pot of disciplinary creators that shared in the collective importance of relevant and impactful design endeavors. It was the second time in my life that I had a moment of realization- a catharsis, so to speak, that our artificial landscape and the subsistence of our social structure alienates us from the human-environmental connection. Becoming a father at 40 years old, it was only out of necessity that we moved out of the city and into the country during my wife’s pregnancy. Sustainability isn’t enough– we need to design for ecological harmony”, says Dror. This apperception became a catalyst for Supernature –a conscious methodology to connect humans and urbanization in Nature.
The most significant disconnect is between the contrived structures’ and compromised architecture where our lack of empathy causes a one-sided relationship with our natural surroundings that isn’t responsive to an ecological footprint. Where we are today in the context of where we were 100 years ago versus 30 years ago, 70 % of the human population are living in our cities, growing from a metropolis to a gigalopolis. Sprawl development must be the conjugative driver to think about a new re-urbanization.
“Our DNA continues to blindly guide us, but as time marches on, we as a species have realized this change is critical for
Startling, we consume too much of our natural resources; 50% are used for the built environment. The greatest enhancement one can adapt to quickly is to work with what is locally available and inclusive to the region’s flora and fauna. This will benefit other living things and give a sense of joy and belonging in celebrating the city’s culture. Where we live, work, and play should be as self-sufficient as possible.
In our practice, we encourage people to step into Nature. There’s practical evidence that supports the positive impacts for the human-nature connection and the research on biophilic and regenerative design, but little guidance as to how to implement them into the built environment. In serving one another, those who wear the creative hat find creative ways to add value to urban planning.
How quickly Nature recovers when we stop polluting it. Nature keeps giving to receive and receives to keep on giving. If we examine this closely, the only “exchange” is the act of giving, as there’s no separation or isolation within our ecosystem. How can Nature teach us to unite? Our moral consciousness is the only indelible mark that will determine the true value of nature’s work.
Buckminster Fuller was one of our greatest futurists and mentors of all time. He challenged perceptions and made it his life’s greater purpose to find the extensive resources for malnutrition, renewable energy, homelessness, and disease. At the source, our shift is in how we apply circular innovation for the outcomes of the consequences we created. Humans make the decisions that influence biodiversity and effect the well-being of others. Practical solutions adapt from Nature to create an infrastructure to address localized needs. All-natural processes created are independent of the grid. The purpose is what you do for your corporate mission; being one with Nature is a life’s mission that equates to mankind’s evolution. There are no boundaries to our disciplines except for the ones that we create.
“I’d like to dream in a world where we Design Without Boundaries. Studio Dror’s strength is to rethink typologies and structures, finding new ways to improve well-being and create meaningful connections. Overall, I find the service-oriented model of design is flawed, as it places restraints on the creativity that emerges when artists and designers are given the freedom to experiment.” – Dror Benshetrit.
“Our DNA continues to blindly guide us, but as time marches on, we as a species have realized this change is critical for our survival”, says Chad Knight. Time relentlessly drives humanity forward- mutating and optimizing us based on our perception of the world. Surpassing our own ego, we learn to live harmoniously with Nature.” ☐
All images Courtesy of Dror/ SuperNature Labs
Dror Dreams: Design Without Boundaries
Foreword by Aric Chen
The Monacelli Press