Synchronicity Island by Jakub Szczęsny


Polish Design Season: Jakub Szczęsny of Centrala has designed a floating island that purifies river water, powered by exercise machines.

The river water is passed through four filters by kinetic pumps attached to the exercise equipment.

It is then collected in four tanks before being returned to the river through a fountain in the raft's centre.

Szczęsny created the installation for architecture and art festival Synchronocity in Warsaw this month.

Here's some more information from Szczęsny:


In frame of the second issue of architecture/art festival SYNCHRONICITY, Warsaw City Council commissioned a an installation that would interfere with the new city program of the revitalization of Vistula riverside. A floating island came out as a natural idea, as islands/platforms symbolize autonomy from reality serving as ideal figures or conceptualization spaces.

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I’ve proposed a systematic approach: a water treatment plant powered by human muscles by Warsaw inhabitants performing fitness exercises and pumping polluted river water via kinetic pumps integrated in the fitness machines to four filters and four tanks to a fountain basin at the very end of the cycle. The whole installation is supposed to perform a role of a propaganda tool changing the consciousness of Warsawers by showing the efficiency of human action in the process of purifying the waters of their river. What’s meaningful is the fact that many Poles, even after twenty years of liberalization, still don’t believe in their own potential as individuals or members of communities, in positively changing their life environment.

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Author: Jakub Szczęsny
Cooperation: Kaja Pawełek, Artur Kolanowski, Witek Komarczewski, Marek Tkaczyk
Production: Bęc Zmiana Fundation

Posted on Friday October 30th 2009 at 5:44 pm by Jasmin Gunkar. Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • guide

    something tells me the joker is behind this…

  • luxor

    i’ve been pondering about this concept a long time ago…

    we have tapped all sources of renewable energy, solar, geothermal hydroelectric and biogas but we haven’t thought of human energy.

    this dezeen post makes sense. a lot of sense.

  • what joker?… that’s the merry go round of grimace and barney

  • CROFTdesign

    No, luxor, I disagree.

    There is more than enough solar to power the planet. Why should we work for energy? Shouldn’t energy work for us? (especially if its already there!) Aren’t we too busy to work for energy? I mean, this concept might apply to a local gym, where the subjects power the building while working out; that might make sense.

  • Isa

    hmm.. this is something that would look interesting on paper with rendered pictures.. colour scheme reminds me of early 1990s aerobic videos..

  • thierry

    this should be included into a building rather than a rural area far far away from people. People in city need more exercise!!
    one of my coursemate is doing this in a townscape.

  • bodkin

    wouldn’t this be put to more use collecting and purifying water for people to drink rather than just for putting clean water back in a polluted river?

  • Too funny, you are thirsty so you need to get out on the bike and run for your water. I wonder what happens to the people that can’t walk in the commune…no water for them?

  • mars cao

    Is it really work?I want know more and hope to use it….

  • The best aerobics and work out spot in the whole world!