19th Ave New York, NY 95822, USA

Rotor | 2015

What’s Eating the Chinese Mitten Crab orchestrates an encounter between visitors to two arts festivals taking place this summer: the Bruges Triennial and Beaufort in Zeebrugge. The starting point for Rotor’s project is the massive presence of a non-native species of crab in the Bruges canals and waterways: the Chinese mitten crab or Eriocheir sinensis. In China, this crab is considered a delicacy, but in Europe the creature is colonising the waterways and upsetting the local natural equilibrium. As a response to this disruption, scientists are looking for ways to destroy this crab population and researching forms of coexistence with native animal species. Rotor makes this fascinating topic a subject of discussion and experience in the Poortersloge: the artistic collective has installed a ‘natural history’ observatory there, with a wide range of photos, newspaper clippings, artefacts and an aquarium. In the URB SEA café, the pop-up version on the beach in Zeebrugge, a dining room has been set up where tasting sessions are regularly held with all sorts of invasive species of plants or animals on the menu, combined with roundtable discussions with researchers and experts.





Rotor, founded in 2005, is a Brussels architecture collective focused on the cycle of industrial and construction materials. Critic of existing regulatory and cultural standards, Rotor has worked in recent years with architects and decision makers to stress the ecological and economic importance of recycling in construction, disseminate their research in publications (including their Vademecum) and through conferences. Rotor DC - Deconstruction and the commercial site that accompanies it give economic value to recycled building materials. The team is made up of architects, designers and other professionals in the engineering and materials sciences, including Lionel Billiet, Lionel Devlieger, Tristan Boniver, Gabrielle Leyden, Maarten Gielen, Michael Ghyoot, Benjamin Lasserre, Melanie Tamm and Renaud Haerlingen. In 2010, they represented Belgium at the 12th International Architecture Biennale of Venice with “Usus / Usures”, in 2013 they were the curatorial team for Oslo Triennale of Architecture “Behind the Green Door”. In 2016, they were nominated for OVAM Ecodesign PRO Award.

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