Urban Oasis by Andrea Mangone

Urban Oasis was born as an internal project at Bantum, a design consultancy based in Shanghai. The project, in fact, was initially thought for the Chinese market as in China the global urbanisation trends are even more extreme.

The name Urban Oasis nicely translates the product’s philosophy: a natural island in a city covered by concrete, where people can reconnect to nature and re-gain control over the food they eat while learning something new and having fun.

– Andrea Mangone

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In Shanghai we could experience first-hand the trend that inspired our design: people are moving to live in mega-cities facing rising levels of air and water pollution, increasing amount of trash produced, food safety issues while growing more and more disconnected from nature.
Urban Oasis wants to shine a light over a more virtuous lifestyle where people would re-gain control over the food they eat by growing vegetables directly in their homes.

– Andrea Mangone

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At an individual level, Urban Oasis would provide a constant supply of high quality organic food, an educative experience for kids and adults, and an aesthetic product able to nicely decorate a variety of interiors. At scale, the practice of urban farming would bring to a lower amount of food packaging manufactured and being trashed, lower levels of Co2 produced, less pesticides released in water reservoirs.

– Andrea Mangone

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We wanted the product to be attractive, super easy to use, educative and be a model of eco-sustainability. The packaging was designed to be as minimal as possible. The product package in fact is the pot it self, with all the accessories neatly organised inside and the tray doubling as a cap. The pot, with its modern and minimal look, was designed to fit perfectly both on a balcony or indoor. The user experience is organised as an easy step by step process. All the user has to do is to follow the numbers and relative instructions reported directly on the packaging.

– Andrea Mangone

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The main challenges were related to choosing the right materials for the pot, the accessories and the packaging. While doing so we had to balance their level of eco-sustainability and the aesthetic freedom their production method would allow us to achieve. The variety of natural materials used was also meant to let people experience different textures, different smells and tactile feelings, that are becoming increasingly rare in our lives surrounded by plastic products.

– Andrea Mangone

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Urban Oasis dates back to 2012. The project ran intensely for about 2-3 months, but I recently individually improved the design of the product and packaging to better reflect my current capabilities and skills.

– Andrea Mangone

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About Andrea Mangone

Andrea Mangone is an Italian industrial designer based in Milano striving to change the world for the better by changing people’s behaviours, one person at a time. Currently working as an independent designer for international established brands and ambitious startups. You can find more of his works on his Behance profile or website.