Footprint of Food

How can we create an experience where visitors can gain a more intuitive understanding of the carbon footprint of food?


Roles:  Project leader, concept design, installation design, multisensory experience design, inculding audio and visual, installation production, graphic design. I developed and executed the installation as project leader.

Collaborators: This project was completed during a Research Residency in the Food Studio at IDEO, installed at the Asian Art Museum as part of an event hosted by the Perennial. 

Exhibition: This project was shown in the summer of 2016 at the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco during one of their signature TAKEOVER events.

Press: IDEO Stories: The Art of Climate Change



At IDEO, I was asked to created an installation to educate the public about the impact of food choices on the environment.

The project was to be deployed at the Asian Art Museum, at an event hosted by our client, the Perennial, a restaurant focused on sustainable food practices.

Project site: Asian Art Museum.  Modeled in Rhino by Ani Liu

Project site: Asian Art Museum.  Modeled in Rhino by Ani Liu


How can we create an interactive activity that captures the feeling that

small efforts can make a big impact?

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We designed an interactive installation that represents the mass of CO2/ carbon footprint in a dark cloud of balloons.


As participants learn more about ways food choices can help to sequester CO2 and reverse climate change, they earn opportunities to pop a bubble, dramatically bringing light back into the room.


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We want participants to leave with a feeling that they can make a difference. We also want to visitors to be able to tangibly experience and visualize the carbon foot print of various food choices.



How might we intuitively understand the carbon footprint of food choices?


How might we pivot the sentiment of “This is not my problem” to “We can affect change collectively” ?

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How might we make a fun, uplifting activity while still addressing climate change?

The event at the Asian art museum was a success and over the course of the night hundreds of visitors experienced our carbon footprint installation and learned more about the impact of food on climate change.

Below are some construction details, and shots from the work in progress: