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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

The Mobiation Project - a tiny house project with a difference

by Kent Griswold on March 18th, 2014. 2 Comments

The Mobiation Project – a tiny house project with a difference

Since August 2012, we have been living in the mobi-01, a mobile off-grid, open-house that has been moving around Amsterdam, though we are making plans to take it across borders.

Rather than the usual tiny-houses of the movement, this one has a more social role, camping mostly in semi-public urban spots, and folds in to become a 20ft container, when in transport mode.

project postcard

The tale so far:

“We wanted to go neo-primtive, simple, small and funky. We seemingly have a desire for attention, so the house is open. We do workshops on various DIY techniques, presentations and talks about the project, are filming footage for a documentary about the project, and have been building up a repertoire of message-laden tracks [music] to take the info-tainment just that little bit further. The Mobiation Project was set up to give us meaning, an all-encompassing live project that, because we set up a foundation to manage it, has a goal to spread the word. The house folds into a 20ft container, can then be lifted onto a container truck and transported to the next location.

project in daylight

A small 350W wind turbine and a 160W pv panel supplies the electricity for laptops and LED lighting. Rainwater provides for most of our water needs – we have, at some locations, filtered ditch water, to supplement this. We are currently drawing up the bath/composting toilet trailer that parks into the mobi-01, but for now use a bucket for washing, and a small urine-separating unit for toilet, and a wormery & bokashi bin for kitchen waste.

Till now, we have been urban nomads. Some of the locations have been – a festival [three in total] where we did gigs, film showings, playing open-houses and workshops/talks, and building and managing some composting toilets; an exhibition on “urban outsiders,” where we were a live exhibition piece; a suburban playground where we were an informal meeting place, built willow huts, made fires, read stories to the kids around the stove, built a cob oven, set up a community veg patch and so forth…. Currently we are stationed next to a restaurant in an as of yet undeveloped part of Amsterdam east, where we are assisting the restaurant in greening up their business, as well as working with the first inhabitants of the area to set up a community edible garden…


So far, the approach has been to be invited to come and help on some community project, in return for a place to set up house. This has been in and around Amsterdam, but this year we will be making the move away from Amsterdam. Its time to leave the city and move out into less known territory.

Together, we are ecological architect, welder, furniture maker, compost toilet enthusiasts, vegan-foodie, doglover, DIY-enthusiast, tattooist and graphic designer…. in fact, we are well educated autodidacts and whatever we cannot do, we look it up, call on others to assist and as last resort, work on trial and error. There’s a whole philosophy behind the project about self-determinism, anarchism, anti-individualism and anti-corporate control, and we are exploring and developing this in music, as well as writing a graphic novel set in the future.

Simple living and doing good is the essence of the project, and it appears to be an ongoing process.

We would love to assist people to move along the same path, in return for somewhere to stay, a weekly box of local organic veg and other negotiable treats. We discovered that we are change junkies, conscientious change junkies and like to move into different contexts, inject some good, game-changing energy and action, and move onto the next location. Perhaps some day, we’ll settle somewhere – I have a dream to bury the mobi-01 into a south-facing hillside, but for now, we embrace nomadism and the global awareness it engenders.”

See more at

project at night

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Your Garden will not green-grow
-if you do not water it properly-