The Frigo, by GPOD (Gonçalo Prudêncio Office for Design) is a design experiment geared towards developing an outdoor fridge. Using the the sun as its only energy source, and dirt and plants as its insulation, the Frigo explores alternative ways of storing perishable goods outside.
In the early phases of the Frigo project, Gonçalo Prudêncio realized that the technique his studio was using for their outdoor fridge was not in fact new, but and existing process already coined as “Pot-in-pot.” The idea behind the Pot-in-pot is just as straightforward as the name – two pots of a different size are used to create a cooling system, where the inner contains the food and the outer hosts plants and dirt.
The Frigo project faces two major challenges: to chill a container during days in a Southern European climate, and to create an application that would fit into daily routines without feeling forced, but still be able to encourage a change in behavior. During the early phases of research, using only ready-made pots available in stores, Prudêncio was able to obtain temperatures of 9º C in the spring and 12º C in the summer. More than an undertaking made for profit, the goal of this experiment is to find alternative ways to manage daily tasks as well as to reduce the carbon footprint associated with refrigeration. In fact, GPOD encourages everyone to make their own Frigo, and you can even download a construction kit on their site. They also wish to hear your comments to be able to develop the idea further.
The idea of storing food outside or in dirt may not be a new idea, but GPOD is providing new formats to translate these old ideas into something accessible that can work in our modern and busy lives. The design studio also works in an inspiring way, actively pursuing avenues that open up ’bigger’ questions and going beyond form and function in their design process. This ideology of welcoming technology, social awareness, sustainability and ecological aspects is something the studio has dubbed as Dreamality - a tasteful word and indeed an admirable attitude.