PARADE: An exhibition by Derek Fordjour opens at the Sugar Hill Museum in Harlem

Design Wild LIVES to create gardens throughout the city.  We love how the magic and wonder of the natural world wildly transforms and improves our city life. We have been busy on a bunch of projects this season designing and creating gardens both in residential spaces as well as public ones.

This month Design Wild is honored to be bring a touch of that wonder and wild into an incredible new installation opening on July 27th at the Sugar Hill Museum:



PARADE: Derek Fordjour

PARADE is an immersive multi-media installation by artist Derek Fordjour that will take visitors on a journey through the sense-memory of childhood and the process of forging an identity.  At once playful and poignant, disorienting and propulsive, PARADE will engage and inspire both adults and children alike.

You may be wondering, how does Design Wild contribute to a museum show??


This is actually the second Fordjour Studio installation Design Wild has contributed to.  The first one was in 2015 and you can read what the Times had to say about that show here.


This time around, Design Wild worked on a few angles of the show, both supporting overall creative process, discovering playful material solutions and bringing touches of that magical wonder only the wood elves do better!

Here’s a bit about our process:

1. Working closely with the artist we down loaded his entire vision into a 3D model. Being able to walking through the model allowed the artist to make design decisions and experience his concept at scale. The model also became an essential tool for communicating with the wider installation team; from curators and museum staff to construction professionals.

skrim photo.jpg

2. Now for materials:

I mean, what museum show is complete without 4 tons of soil? Or several pallets of brick!  Just let me loose in a masonry yard and I’ll be happy for the rest of the day.


3.  And the magic….?

Well… it may involve a 14’ tree installed in museum...  but for that you’ll have to come see the show!


Edible University

Growing Vegetables on the Street

As a horticulture experiment as well as a social experiment a dozen planters located in close proximity to Washington Park in Greenwich Village, Manhattan were planted with a wide mix of flowers, vegetables and herbs including Swiss chard, snow peas, beets, basil, rosemary, beans, strawberries and more.  Growing in one of the most trafficked corners of the globe these edible plants grew in full view of thousands of people traveling through the city.

Many folks stopped to ask questions, to tell stories and relate their own history to vegetable growing, their grandmother's legendary beans, their father's famous tomatoes.  Often the question was 'What if someone steals the crops?' That's ok, as long as they leave some for the rest of us!

A Townhouse Full of Flowers


A beautiful townhouse located on Manhattan’s Upper West Side has four separate garden terraces from the ground floor to the 6th floor rooftop.  All four spaces are planted with a diverse mix of perennials, trees, shrubs, annuals and flowering bulbs. Careful select is paid to species for continual but changing seasonal bloom and color.  Selected herbs and vegetables are planted on the top floor for use in the residents’ kitchen.

Before photos: Terrace plantings were limited to several boxwood shrubs in terrecota pots