Cannibal’s Bath

In the spring of 2019, Mayor de Blasio declares New York City a closed loop—no new materials in and no materials out. New York City will no longer landfill its architectural turnover. It must cannibalize itself. But the well-intentioned policy re-introduces some ancient problems to the contemporary city. As the last crane collapses, the city is faced with the daunting task of moving massive architectural elements without the aid of mechanical equipment. 

Following the great flood of 2019,The Cannibal’s Bath immerses the city in a floating playground of building components. In this neutral buoyancy state; stubborn masses transform into colossal toys. Each calibrated to come to life with the meager touch of a human. The once single-purpose elements are re-deployed to continually transform the space for the needs of the moment. Imagine an architecture that defies stasis, that begs change, and elicits the emotion of floating in a bath of architectural elements.


Brandon Clifford, Johanna Lobdell & Wes McGee in collaboration with Davide Zampini—CEMEX Global R&D

year: 2019
location: Queens, New York
site: MoMA PS1
program: Young Architects Program, finalist
material: Cannibalized Concrete Elements
structure: Edoardo Tibuzzi and Dragos Naicu—AKT II
puppet: Joshua Longo
project lead: Tyler Swingle
project team: Alexandre Guerini \ Kevin Marblestone \ Matthew John Meyers \ Asa Peller \ Gil Sunshine \ Carlos Enrique Terrado \ Emily Whitbeck