Grass is growing – both literally and figuratively – as an interior design element worldwide after coming into vogue after a series of artistically-driven installations.
The works of British artists Heather Ackroyd and Dan Harvey include the installation as Dilston Grover in South East London, where a church-turned-gallery now features grass as a major design element.
Now, a new grassy experiment is gaining acclaim in the UK, and this latest project is also the fitout of a religious building, albeit on a much larger scale.
UK turf company Lindum and their offshoot of WOW!Grass have recently completed a project that now sees the entire floor space of the nave of the York Minster cathedral turfed with grass. A number of promotional shots for the development depict church leaders fully robed mowing the natural flooring material.
The first question that comes to mind is one of logistics. How could a team fit out a 1,000 year old, highly preserved, culturally important religious building with grass without damaging the underlying foundations?
The answer is all in the turf. Developed to stand as an installation piece, the turf does not rely on a soil base – rather growing from a plant sheet, which is made from recycled British textiles. This protects the original flooring and allows for the entire 16,000 square feet of the nave to be completely covered in green.
The installation was implemented in order to promote York Minster and raise funds for its maintenance, doing so through a very modern, very green, spin.
As out of the box as it seems, grass as a design feature is truly increasing in popularity. The mix of ancient buildings with highly modern, highly green ideologies is a fantastic step in the direction of greening our lives and buildings by taking small steps and testing the boundaries of indoor/outdoor design.
It may not be as simple as “art installation today, common practice tomorrow” but allowing people to become accustomed to seeing extensive greenery indoors is never a negative idea.