Flow2 kitchen by Studio Gorm



Oregon designers John Arndt and Wonhee Jeong of Studio Gorm have designed a kitchen where waste products are used to grow plants.


Drying dishes drip onto plants in terracotta containers.


Food scraps are broken down by worms and the resulting fertiliser used is for the plants.


A double-walled terracotta container acts as a refrigerator, cooling the inside as water evaporates through the outer wall.


The project is on show as part of and exhibition called Call and Rersponse at the Museum of Contemporary Craftin Oregon until 31 October.


Photographs are by Wonhee Jeong and John Arndt.

See also:

Vaisselier Système D by Matière A

Colo dishwasher by Peter Schwartz and Helene Steiner
Ethical Kitchen by Alexandra Sten Jørgensen


Here's some more information from Studio Gorm:



Oregon based studio Gorm (John Arndt and Wonhee Jeong) has designed a new version of their kitchen, flow and the kitchen of terrestrial mechanics.

Flow is a living kitchen where nature and technology are integrated in a symbiotic relationship, processes flow into one another in a natural cycle, efficiently utilizing energy, waste, water and other natural resources. It provides a space not only for preparing food but an environment that gives a better understanding of how natural processes work. A kitchen where food is grown, stored, cooked and composted to grow more food.


The flow products can be used independently but are far more effective when they work in concert as part of the larger system. The individual objects are relatively uncomplicated, acting as simple vehicles for the more complex natural processes to do the work. This kitchen is developed as a flexible system where resources are reused by several elements creating a dynamic flow between the products. The flow kitchen focuses on three major problem areas in the kitchen Waste, Water and Energy.

The hanging dish rack offers vertical storage for drying dishes saving valuable counter space, water from the dish rack drips on the herbs and edible plants, which are grown in the planter boxes positioned below the rack.

The refrigerator is one of the largest consumers of electricity in the home. The majority of the items we refrigerate do not need to be kept as cold as a standard fridge temperatures. The evaporative cooling fridge box keeps food cool through evapo-transpiration. The space between the double walls is filled with water which slowly seeps through the outer wall and evaporates, causing the inside temperature to cool. It is deal for storing vegetables, fruit, eggs, cheese and butter. The evaporative cooling fridge reduces the need for a larger conventional fridge.


The Storage jars are made from unglazed earthenware with beech wood lids. They utilize the natural porous properties of earthenware, which creates an ideal environment for maintaining the consistency of bread, extending the life of garlic and onions, storing grains and growing herbs. The beech wood lids which have natural anti microbial properties can also be used as cutting boards or serving trays.

Up to 40% of household waste can be composted. The integrated cutting board can be slid forward allowing scraps to be swept into the composting bin. Kitchen scraps, newspaper, junk mail and paper scraps can be added to the vermicomposter. Worms breakdown food and turn it into worm castings, a nutrient rich fertilizer (about 2 weeks start to finish). By pulling the handle finished castings are sifted into the collection tray where they can be dried out until needed. The fertilizer can be used in the herb boxes, added to houseplants or the garden.

The dish and utensil drawer provides the necessary space for storing plates bowls cups and cutlery in an economic and easy to access format.


Small trash and recycling bins.

The bag rack is used to hang net market bags, these can be used to hold onions potatoes or produce form the market. The rack can also be used to hang most any other type of shopping bag.

The gas cook top is made up of a floral pattern, offering an alternative to the conventional standards. The continuous surface allows pots to be easily moved on and off the heat source.

Flow2 is on display at the Museum of Contemporary Craft as part of the Exhibition Call and Response. The show will be up until October 31.

Posted on Tuesday August 11th 2009 at 12:24 pm by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • B

    good to see that there are designers that can handle a complex system and make it look good too.


  • modular

    I really like this!

  • i second B’s response. the design also makes being green look simple and attractive!

  • Amy

    I love this and really need it in my life! Aside from the good vibes you’d get knowing it was helping the environment, i like how they’ve managed to make the work space actually usable! Brilliant.

  • ap

    worms…in the kitchen?
    do you have any idea about the odors that one thing like that will generate inside a small space/condo?
    Get off from the Concept Panet and get back to the earth!

  • audioinput

    pure form follows function. nice quality material selections and puristic straight implementation. love this one very much… looking forward to see more stuff from the gorms.

  • Donn

    It appears that the stove is an afterthought and no storage for utensils. It looks like you want to set this inside of a big room and work from all 4 sides.

    Likewise no integrated plumbing.

  • Michael

    My only thought is that the overall feel for this new kitchen is a woodshop workbench. Aesthetically, I desire more then this common utilitarian solution. I feel like I could build a bird house or strip an old chair using the same table. It feels like is needs to explore new forms, not reused ones. I am not saying make it more complex, just, step out of the work room…

  • Gollumpus

    Might I also point out that the placement of the temperature control knobs are behind the stove elements, which would mean a user has to reach over and around hot pots and gas flames. All this and it’s made out of wood!!!

    However, I do like the intent of the design.


  • Nixie

    i really like the design – i think the aesthetic is a refreshing departure from the sterile neutered forms modern high-designy kitchens have been pursing of late.

    that said the conceptual grounding, at least some of it – is pretty weak. composting on your counter top is a terrible idea (for reasons mentioned above, among others), and no one in their right mind would do it. if you don’t have the space to do your composting outside, you don’t have room to grow anything with your compost, either.

  • Kris

    nice example of simplification, but somehow reminds me so much to The Disintegrated kitchen (Cuisine désintégrée) by Bouroullec brothers, a work done at 1998 for Capellini. http://www.bouroullec.com/

  • Hi John and WonHee,
    this looks great, good job! Straight-forward functionality, simplicity and pure aesthetics; well done.
    To Gollumpus: might I also point that you can just stand on the side as well, in front of the fire pits, that way you don’t need to burn your hands!

    All the best,

  • Gollumpus

    To Maarten: true one could stand to the side, however I see this as a loss of efficiency. I like to work laterally across my workspace, not along it and around a corner and back.

    The unit could be altered slightly so that the control knobs are placed on the front and below the counter surface, say where the vegetables are hanging (yes, it’s a bit more traditional). The vegetable bag may either be stored elsewhere or lowered a couple of inches to hang below the control strip.


    PS – to Maarten: I liked the “Pile of Suitcases” from your website. If I had a place to put it I’d buy one. I also like the “Contrast Chair”. It’s fun!

  • karen

    maybe this diametrically opposes the intent, but i’d LOVE to see this adapted as an outdoor kitchen. the sink could hook up to an outside faucet (like the no crank sink station, but with more flair) & the cook top could use propane like any gas-powered grill on the market (and would need a cover). if it’s put together modularly, you could add/subtract the refrigerator and compost features. i’ll bet this would sell a gazillion units.

  • erj

    Wasn’t something like this in Readymade? Cool concept!

  • Wadi

    Very arty, but not very clever.
    The free hanging rack isn’t very trustful.
    Compost has to rest for a year, before it can be used as earth!
    I miss a bit the perfumed candle against smell of the worm poo.
    Nice materials.

  • Lee

    ingenious and beautiful! usable? not sure.

  • hocus

    Seems like the perfect habitat for ants and pests. The idea that one can integrate a whole bunch of very diverse functions in just one piece of furniture is quite old and impractical.

  • Philip

    I particularly like the fridge. Many years ago, I lived in a prefab house that had a fridge of this type called an Ozocool, very effective. Where can I get one of these new ones?

  • I like the idea, but i’m curious to know how practice it is.

  • thinkler

    i could see why youd want the dials for the stove on the back side if you have kids, but seems impractical and even more unsafe for general use.

  • Raky Martinez

    Very nice deconstruction. Only thought, so washing the dishes is the main thing here rather than preparing food and cooking?

  • Barnaby

    Love the design, but what material is the cooktop made out of? is it heat resistant? and also if you were to put your pans down on the table top would it mark it? Looks like laminated MDF for the tabletop but not too sure. Would love to know what materials were used.