Garden Variety Soda Fountain, 2017-2018 Rocket Grant Research and Development Award
GVSF is a sculptural vending cart designed for housing and serving naturally fermented sodas. The sodas are made with ingredients grown in the community garden and orchards in the Rosedale Community Gardens in Kansas City, Kansas. Some of the flavors and ingredients include: Sour Cherry Kombucha, Blackberry Jun, Pickle Kefir, Basil Kefir, and Pineapple Jalapeno Kombucha.
GVSF was born out of an interest in creating transformational flavors from local garden ingredients. Beverages are the focus of GVSF because of their ability to transform common flavors into surprising elixirs. GVSF was envisioned as a contemporary soda fountain, a free gathering place of inclusion where we can talk politics, art, fermentation, and gardening. Sodas were developed by pharmacies as a way to sweeten bitter medicines such as cocaine, pepsin, lithium, and caffeine. GVSF is serving medicine in the form of naturally fermented probiotic drinks, sunshine, garden greenery, and conversation.
The vending cart itself is ornamented with 30 tiles designed to commemorate the ingredients used in the sodas: cherry, blackberry, basil, jalapeno, cucumber pickles, and sweet potato (for sweet potato fly in the fall or spring).
GVSF was produced with a 2017 Research and Development Rocket Grant from the Charlotte Street Foundation and the Spencer Museum of Art with funding from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.