Herbal Teable

2015

      Live mint plants, hydroponic growing system, wood, glass, steel barrel. Approximately 34 inches wide x 48 inches long x 24 inches tall.

“Who would then deny that when I am sipping tea in my tearoom I am swallowing the whole universe with it and that this very moment of my lifting the bowl to my lips is eternity itself transcending time and space?”  ― D.T. Suzuki, Zen and Japanese Culture

As famous Japanese author D.T. Suzuki clearly alludes, tea has been a culturally and politically significant drink for thousands of years. It continues to gain popularity, being the most consumed beverage after water, with many varieties; ranging from the traditional tea plant Camellia Sinensis, to the hundreds of available herbal teas. Tea is often consumed in good company, shared over thoughtful conversation. Both the social aspect of tea drinking and the ephemeral beauty of plant growth are inspirations for this functional hydroponic garden table. Varieties of mint grown inside the table are brewed and shared in a communal act of tea drinking, creating a space for discussion regarding the ecological and social implications of consuming tea. The "Teable" thereby operates not only as a vessel for growing small batches of herbal teas, but is also as a participating platform from which to support lively and critical dialogue. Mint plants have been specifically chosen for their specific qualities of vigorous growth, favorable responses to pruning and harvesting, as well as their medicinal properties when served as tea.
By growing and brewing the tea personally, the cycle of industrial production and consumption is interrupted by a more immediate, even intimate form of creation.