NY Design Week has officially kicked off so this past Friday I got into the groove by stopping in at "New York’s premier exhibition of designers of contemporary furnishings and home accessories made and/or designed in Brooklyn," BKLYN Designs 2010. This year’s show, the eighth annual, was more scaled-back/super-edited compared to years past but offered more than enough sustainable homegrown designs to keep me intrigued.
FRAMEicariums (a riff on the scientific term, "formicarium") are salvaged picture frames transformed into totally functional ant farms with the help of sand and plexiglass viewing boxes. Yep, real live ant farms set inside of repurposed picture frames of all shapes and sizes found around NYC.
Here's how Hayden and Vitale describe their curious colony creations:
FRAMEicariums are the ant-farms of your childhood reimagined into a living work of art that showcases the geological excavations of the the tunnels formed by ants. Unlike a conventional ant farm, this community is displayed as a designed centerpiece on a wall or desktop. The FRAMEicarium is constantly changing and active. It demonstrates the elegant performance of everyday tasks and behaviors of an ant community.
It should be pointed out that FRAMEicariums are easy to disassemble/clean and feature a hole for feeding purposes. But there's one element not addressed by Hayden and Vitale that I'd be particularly interested in: a built-in security system.