Maps have intrigued us from the start. Our name – Foodscape Collective – draws on the idea of the “food land-scape”. This spatial awareness of our food stories, food system, and our relationships to food, has prompted us to ask how different spaces and places – for living, working, resting, wishing – bear imprints on our bodies and choices.
We love to map. We are also mindful of what mapping means when information are shared freely, especially in locating gardens. Questions like how much details to share? do we point out the exact location? how do we make the contact information accessible to the relevant people while at the same time without compromising the privacy and security of the gardeners?
The following are a few of these attempts to share our findings in the best way we can as of now. It is a work-in-progress and we hope you will find some meaningful in them. Have a look at several of the Collective’s works, that have spun out of this ongoing interest.
Mapping Edible Gardens
Our earliest mapping work evolved in March 2015, as we were asked what food security in Singapore could mean. Faced with the “impossible question” (why can’t Singapore grow more food of its own?), people often responded with the same answer about land scarcity. Yet how could we make sense of this phrase – “we have no land” – when we walk past empty “state land” daily, see an empty grass patch at ground level below our windows, or see the creative gardens neighbours sometimes set up?
So our first map was an attempt to find others, and make community visible for all of us: to find out who was growing, what, and where.
Compost Collaboration Map
The concept: The gist ~ informal collaborations between compost makers, food scrap givers (and compost givers). These include:
- crowdsourced maps for compost makers to connect with food scrap givers
- enabling food scrap distribution points, where commercial entities set aside food scraps for collection by nearby compost makers
- enabling adhoc distribution of food scraps, for collection by compost makers
Stage of the initiative:
Exploratory / Co-creation stage.
How to get involved:We are looking for dedicated persons who would like to support in enabling food scrap distribution points, and also individuals with expertise to create and update web maps that people can update at the own time. If interested to know more, write to us at the Collective’s email.
The web map below is updated once every 2 months. Click on the icons to check out the info! To contribute to future map updates, fill up one of the forms below:
- Receive food scraps for composting: https://forms.gle/2NC71wAPVWLH4veb9
- Give food scraps for composting: https://forms.gle/dr6K3AH8gdWdxWxz6
- Give ready-to-use compost or bokashi pre-compost to gardeners: https://forms.gle/neQYYDdxS1GEV9nZA
Businesses ~ fill this form if your business is interested to explore having a dedicated group of Compost Makers who collect regularly from your premises: https://forms.gle/KyFYBAep8nhMSBwf8
View map in full screen: link
Past projects: Mapping Our Neighbourhoods
The idea: Maps and the capacity to think and see spatially, have been an interesting part of Foodscape Collective’s identity. The idea to map Singapore’s food land-scape, the people, their interactions, what we love about a place, what we feel is missing in a place has always been there. Some of us use digital tools to map; others use physical objects; still others use hand-drawn pictures, photographs, audio or other means.
When we first started mapping as a Collective, the focus was always at the national scale. What is there in Singapore? What do we know or care about? As we began to go into details, we realised that maps at a smaller geographic scale may often paint a different picture. Singapore may have food markets, supermarkets and coffee shops in every town, yet there are areas of ‘food deserts’ (relative lack of access to nutritious food). What is happening here?
Neighbourhoods are spaces we live our daily lives in. More often than not, we hesitate to invite people to our own ‘hood because we don’t actually know it well. Who are the people who live and work there? Are there people or spaces worth celebrating? What is missing? What is not obvious, and worth more time to come back to, unearth and understand? What might we additionally notice if we wear different lenses, e.g. that of being sustainable or inclusive?
We did a couple of pilot workshops. Each workshop is a 3-part series: walk, draw & share; collect data / stories; make digital map. The intention is to share these maps (of various forms) that people create, and make them accessible on public platforms, of which some could be showcased as a travelling art installation.
Stage that we are at: Exploratory / Co-creation
Initiate your own neighbourhood mapping!