Coffee has become a valuable part of the day-to-day life of the global population. From office workers to single mothers, teachers to factory workers, everyone has their favourite style of coffee. Over the last 10 years, the Australian coffee market has skyrocketed, with more than one billion cups of coffee consumed in cafes, restaurants and other beverage outlets last year, an increase of 65% over the last 10 years [Australian Coffee Traders Association]. But with many of these caffeine-hungry consumers grabbing their drinks to go, what proportion actually stop to think about where their coffee has come from?
The Young Designers Group at HASSELL in Melbourne is looking to change people’s perception of coffee with a captivating new installation in Queensbridge Square. With an average footfall of 50,000 individuals every day, the square presents a prime opportunity to engage with commuters and local residents during the annual Melbourne Food and Wine Festival which begins on 1 March this year. The festival’s organisers approached HASSELL to design a pavilion which would act as the centrepiece of the event and engage visitors in a conversation about the source of coffee.
In reflection of the ‘takeaway’ notion of the coffee industry, HASSELL will utilise shipping containers, packing crates and shipping pallets to create a temporary vibe, bundled together on and around the Red Stairs on the River Yarra. 125 coffee trees will be arranged in the square with information about the journey of the coffee bean, from its growth on Guatemalan plantations to picking, grinding, brewing and drinking.
The team explains: “The inspiration for the Urban Coffee Farm and Brew Bar comes from a desire to evoke the still somewhat mysterious and exotic geographies associated with the source of coffee. It’s possible to stumble across a coffee plantation within the clearing of a jungle. In fact, the most flavoursome coffee is grown within twenty degrees of the equator in the shade of mountains and under the protection of the existing vegetation canopy. The design of the Urban Coffee Farm attempts to play on this element of intrigue and surprise, creating an unexpected landscape in a familiar urban setting - a pleasant surprise during the course of a normal day.”