the laurentia project


Laurentia brings together creative minds in food, design, art, science, writing, and policy, focused on dialogue that needs to happen now.  To simultaneously talk and make; on critical topics toward actionable progress. Laurentia is workshopping re-made.

I Am Here Only.... A Slow Design Workshop

A group of brave, inspired, sustainable designers and advocate professionals joined us for a re-imagined workshop: an interpersonal opportunity for broad thinking and creative co-speculation on the “practice” of integrative design. The result was explosive and affirming. We heard this resounding feedback: "This is what we have been missing. All thinking spaces should be created with this intention."

We asked attendees to begin their the Living Future “unConference” experience: by chopping, kneading, grating, folding, and mixing. The only hints we gave were to have an expectation of a multi-sensory exercise of smells, flavors, textures, patterns....inviting them to laugh, to toast, to discover, to dig a little deeper. To simply be willing to be moved.

Because our collaborators and guests arrived with a sense of openness this edible engagement resulted in contemplative, companionable, and nourishing discourse.  As we track results of the gathering, we have come to understand that there is a lack of beauty and consideration in the spaces we think in and with a small amount of effort, the mtg protocols and stale structures that lead to group-think or circular thinking vanished. It was personal, communal, consequential and just the beginning.

Our guest collaborator (the man with the prawn) and former professional forager, Matt Dillon made his name as a chef serving hyperlocal, unpretentious food in a tiny 20-seat space. He was a 2007 Food & Wine Best New Chef and a James Beard Award winner in 2012. Upper Bar Ferdinand is Chef Matt’s newest project in Capitol Hill's Chophouse Row. The focus is on wines, sourced with care from family owned, small production bodegas from all over the world. Matt pairs beverage offerings with a food menu of simply prepared dry aged and cured meats, cooked in an open fireplace, and local seafood, served raw, cured or smoked in a passive heat masonry smoker. Vegetables are served pickled or roasted.


Our Living Future 2016 off-site gathering was transformative, and affirmed for us that we're on the right track with this process. We're excited to introduce more "think tank dinners" in 2017. Join us...