The artwork, called "The Currents", draws inspiration from the fascinating view of the St. Lawrence River
LÉVIS, QC and VANCOUVER, BC, May 2, 2014 /CNW Telbec/ - The new
Desjardins building in Lévis houses the tallest interior living wall in
the world. The artwork, "The Currents", was designed by Green over Grey, a design firm specializing in the creation of living walls (aka green walls or vertical gardens). For this project, they drew
inspiration from the views of the St. Lawrence River visible from
Quebec City and Lévis.
"When Desjardins began work on revitalizing the Cité Desjardins de la
coopération in 2011, we wanted to find a tangible way to show our
commitment to sustainable development and enrich our employees' work
environment through meaningful initiatives, such as this beautiful
living work of art. This impressive vertical garden in the new building
at 150 rue des Commandeurs, in Lévis goes a long way in creating a
pleasant and unique environment in which our employees can continue to
thrive," stated Monique F. Leroux, Chair of the Board, President and
CEO of Desjardins Group.
"According to our research, this living wall is the tallest indoor vertical garden in the world," said Patrick Poiraud, co-founder of Green over Grey. "The wall is
fully hydroponic (i.e. soil-free) and incorporates plants that thrive
in similar vertical environments found in nature, like on tree branches
and next to waterfalls. The end result is a visually pleasing piece
that provides cleaner indoor air and improves both the acoustic quality and the value of the property."
The green wall complements the new building's eco-friendly concept,
which is expected to receive LEED gold certification after completion
Art imitating the stunning beauty of the St. Lawrence River
"André Roy, the project manager from Desjardins overseeing the
installation, wanted to recreate the beauty of summer greenery indoors.
Together with the design firm Coarchitecture, they came up with the concept for the space with the central focus
being on the living wall," recalled Poiraud.
Mike Weinmaster, chief designer for Green over Grey, spent five months
designing the artwork and carefully selecting the plants to create just
the right balance between the different colours and textures. The
colours alternate between various shades of green, yellow, crimson,
purple and cream. White, red and orange flowers will bloom throughout
the year. Watch the video to see how the living artwork was created.
More than 11,000 individual plants artfully arranged according to
colour, texture, pattern and size covering a 15-storey wall of the new
building at 150 rue des Commandeurs, in Lévis.
Plants are growing in a hydroponic system (i.e. soil free) made of 100%
synthetic recycled materials.
Green over Grey eco friendly panels are built from 1.5 metric tons of
recycled water bottles and plastic bags.
The living wall is 213 feet high (65 meters) with a total surface area
of 2,139 square feet (198 square metres).
42 plant species, including philodendrons, monsteras, fig trees, ginger, snake plants (Sansevieria trifasciata), elkhorn ferns (Platycerium bifurcatum), scheffleras, clusias and banana plants.
Spathiphyllum 'Mauno Loa', commonly known as peace lily, is one of the most effective oxygen-producing plants that clean and
purify the air.
According to the NASA Clean Air Study, the peace lily—native to tropical regions of the Americas and
Southeast Asia and known for its distinctive white flower—eliminates significant amounts of pollutants, such as benzene,
formaldehyde and trichloroethylene, which are found in photocopiers and
Plants are laid out to evoke the beauty of the St. Lawrence River as
seen from the Quebec and Lévis areas, which were chosen due to the
cities' close ties with Alphonse Desjardins.
The living wall is situated on the north side of the new building, which
provides office space for roughly 1,450 employees.
The artwork can be seen from the opposite side of the St. Lawrence
coast, specifically from the high-traffic Dufferin walkway in Old
About Green over Grey Living Walls & Design
Based in Vancouver, B.C., with an office in Toronto, Green over Grey is an award-winning design firm that focuses on the creation of
spectacular and eye-catching green walls throughout North America. Its
mission is to create more sustainable environments with cleaner air to
improve people's well-being and add a touch of green to the grey of our
cities. Green over Grey's photo gallery includes living walls installed at the following locations: Microsoft's
headquarters in Redmond, Washington; Guildford Town Centre in Surrey,
B.C.—the largest living wall in North America standing at 10,000ft2 (943m2); Moxies Grill & Bar in Montréal; Vancouver's Olympic village; and the international airports of Edmonton, Alberta and Birmingham, Alabama. After several years of research,
Green over Grey was co-founded in 2008 by Patrick Poiraud, Principal,
and the artist Mike Weinmaster who is the firm's chief designer. Mike
holds a Master of Science in Environmental Engineering from the KTH
Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden and a Bachelor of
Environmental Science from the University of Northern British Columbia,
Prince George, B.C.
About Desjardins Group
Desjardins Group is the leading cooperative financial group in Canada and the fifth
largest cooperative financial group in the world with assets of $212
billion. It has been rated one of Canada's top 100 employers by
Mediacorp Canada. To meet the diverse needs of its members and clients,
Desjardins offers a full range of products and services to individuals
and businesses through its extensive distribution network, online
platforms and subsidiaries across Canada. The group has one of the
highest capital ratios and credit ratings in the industry. It is considered as the fourth safest and strongest
bank in North America according to Global Finance magazine and Bloomberg News respectively.
SOURCE: Desjardins Group
For further information:
(for journalists only)
418-835-8444 or 1- 866-835-8444, ext. 3163
Green over Grey
778-960-8798 or 1-800-862-6784, ext. 100