Speculative architect Liam Young believes that people have had enough with dystopian visions of the future, so he created a future city scenario proposal that he feels is full of optimism and joy. Under Tomorrow’s Sky was to be seen at Eindhoven’s MU and consisted of a series of narratives, films and illustrations together with a room-size miniature model of the organic city. The architectural fiction model – supervised by the people who built Blade Runner and Alien’s set -- emerged from Young’s think tank Tomorrow's Thoughts Today, where mad scientists, astronauts, digital poets, visionaries, illustrators, architects and science fiction guests imagine a city of the future that grows organically, becoming one with the landscape.
Liam Young is an independent designer, futurist, critic and curator, and also the founder of Tomorrow’s Thoughts Today. Based in London, this imaginative think tank explores fictional near-future scenarios that foster debate about social, architectural and political realities on earth. This time the multidisciplinary group imagined how people would live in a nearby future, with a result that is organic and geological but also human.
Living in pods that grow organically and mix with existing mountains, lakes and landscapes seems to be a humble idea of a future city. Under Tomorrow’s Sky, unveiled at this year’s fantastic Dutch Design Week, references modern cities like Dubai’s City Palm Island, a unique artificial settlement with a large number of residential, leisure and entertainment centers where people live and mingle with one another. Based on a post-oil post-capitalist future, these imaginative cities seem to grow out of the ocean and creep up mountains, developing as large complex organisms that can extend as populations grow.
In addition to these pod-like structures, people will still be enjoying simple life pleasures like eating al fresco, sharing stories with neighbors and maybe cars will eventually become obsolete. A bit like Greek islands, houses will be built on top of each other, connected by outdoor stairs, and clothes will still be left outside to dry as the planet gets warmer. For getting from one settlement to the other, zero energy boats will be everyday’s transport of choice, all in this nearby-future dream.
By peeking under tomorrow’s water, visitors of Under Tomorrow’s Sky could see the underworld with glowing LED lights, adding some glow in this fantastic future. As well as the miniature model of the organic city created by special effects artists and collaborators from the film industry, there were astonishing drawings by concept artist and awards winner Daniel Dociu. Dociu’s visions of our future city are colossal landscapes charged with plenty of sci-fi and fantastic imagination.
Photos © Ana Lisa Alperovich for Inhabitat
Illustrations © Daniel Dociu
Last photo © Iris Rijskamp