Anne Trumble draws changes to I-80 corridor

Alexandra Smith

Anne Trumble is the founder of Emerging Terrain, a non-profit research and design collaborative. The organization has done some very cool things in the city of Omaha, Neb. One of the more memorable ones was the grain elevators across an I-80 corridor.

“This one project started the entire group,” Trumble said, who was on campus Wedne sday. Trumble started by cleaning up the area. They recruited the city’s parks and recreations to clean up.

“We found oil, tire tracks and just a lot of trash,” Trumble said.

Once the city started to see what was going on with the clean up the neighborhoods got involved and started to clean up as well. After the area was clean, Trumble began to have artists submit artwork that they would like to see on the grain elevator and received over 500 submissions.

“It took the jury 14 hours to go through them all,” Trumble said. The images had to do with landscape, food and agriculture. The submissions came from all over the United States until finally they had chosen 13 winning pieces. They did the artwork on huge loose leaf vinyl mesh.

“The material allowed breathing and didn’t trap water in,” Trumble said. Then the organization put a huge dinner table at the bottom of all the grain elevators.

“We decided to have a sort of epic community dinner,” Trumble explained, who helped organize the dinner held on Oct. 2, 2010.

“We wanted to do a locally grown dinner, and the caterer was doing things with kiwi and curry and that’s not what my vision was,” Trumble said. So Trumble went to local restaurants and designed teams. Then she would go out and get the ingredients from farms as the teams developed their courses. The dinner turned into a competition.

Once the day of the community dinner came, 53 platters were going out in waves with the help of volunteer waiters.

The table cloth was made of a canvas and they left markers out for people to draw on it. “We got some pretty amazing drawings because most the people who went were artists,” Trumble said.

After the dinner everybody was asking Trumble when she was going to finish the elevators. They had only done 13 and still had 13 left. The remaining 13 are part of the project she’s working on now.

The theme for the other side is future transportation. They have already selected the art work as well. On June 3, they will be having another community dinner.

Tumble’s organization will be looking for fresh young new designers coming in May, which is something for graduating students to consider. “It pays well and is wacky and fun,” Trumble said.