1. Janneke de Lange

Fruiture Nursery

by Janneke de Lange

26 Apr 2024
14 Jul 2024

Designer Janneke de Lange envisions a future scenario in which she can grow her own tropical fruit trees in a mobile plant greenhouse, a 'Wardian case'. Because the Dutch climate is not suitable for fruit trees such as mangoes and papayas, we are dependent on expensive and environmentally harmful international trade. The Netherlands has a long history of bringing botanical specimens to Europe from all over the world and is still central in the trade of decorative plants. Janneke asks us what we can design to envision a future on a smaller personal scale.


jannekedelange_havu_6_53693970135_o - Vu Ha

What's in the 'Fruiture'?

Since childhood, Janneke have been in love with greenhouses, particularly those in botanical gardens. The stark contrast between the warm climate inside the greenhouse and the Dutch weather transports you to a different environment. Throughout time people have tried bringing different parts of the world closer, but how to do that sustainably and responsibly?

Inside the Wardian cases porcelain scale models made using the wheel throwing technique and fruit-shaped moulds are nested between the greenery. They imagine a future space of architecture within architecture. 

The glass domes are constructed out of stained glass using the copper foil technique. The 'crib' of the nurseries was made by repurposing textiles from the base of the trolley.

The Wardian Case

After Philip Franz von Siebold was banished from Japan by the shogun, he transported an immense collection of live plants from Japan. One of the plants that Siebold brought was Fallopia japonica, or Japanese knotweed. In a Wardian case, a mobile glasshouse, these plants were transported from his home in Batavia to Leiden. Together with the knotweed, Siebold transported other species like magnolia (named after Siebold) and Japanese maple. Back in Europe he cultivated these plants and sold them as ornamental plants for western gardens.

Read more about how Japanese Knotweed came to Europe


Wardian Case example -


jannekedelange_havu_2_53692642367_o - Vu Ha

About the Artist

Janneke de Lange is a designer who graduated from Design Academy Eindhoven. Her creative journey intertwines a profound love for nature with a commitment to pioneering design. Janneke's design philosophy is grounded in the intrinsic qualities of materials, a harmonious dance between tradition and innovation. Adopting a hands-on approach within carefully defined conceptual frames, she establishes rules and boundaries at the project's outset, fostering a creative environment that breaks free from constraints.

In Janneke de Lange's hands, each project stands as a testament to the delicate equilibrium between creativity and the natural world. Her work invites viewers to step into enchanting realms where art and nature harmoniously converge, offering a glimpse into the perfect harmony between imagination and the world around us.


Janneke de Lange and her work "FRUITURE NURSERY" -


Portrait Janneke de Lange - Portrait of Janneke de Lange shot by Vu Ha Vu Ha

Japanese Knotweed Festival

This exhibition is part of the Japanese Knotweed Festival. A recurring festival in which we explore our cultural relationship with plants.

Mediamatic organizes a festival every spring around Japanese knotweed, a fast-growing plant known in Europe for its intrusive properties. What many do not know, however, is that this plant species has a host of positive properties. During this festival, we explore how to live in harmony with this controversial plant.

Find the whole programme here