Learning from the ground up

The Ecological Greenhouse at Kibbutz Ein Shemer is providing youth with skills to foster a better future.

A girl walks over a constructed water pool.
Photo by: Courtesy The Ecological Greenhouse Ein Shemer
Artist Avital Geva founded the Ecological Greenhouse on the grounds of Kibbutz Ein Shemer in 1976. For students and teachers, it is known simply as The Greenhouse.

“People didn’t even use the word ‘ecology’ back then. I was working with contextual art but decided to take a break from it. I got a team together, and we asked the kibbutz for the space. We built the greenhouse, which slowly expanded until it was as big as a soccer field. At that point, we couldn’t occupy any more space, so we expanded upwards. Then we realized we had to expand downwards. We couldn’t dig a hole in the ground, so we chose to explore water,” Geva recounts.

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