Migrating Landscapes

Biennale Architettura Venezia 2021

The installation at the Giardino delle Vergini revolves around the question of novel ecosystems and the displacement of vegetation around the globe due to mobility, trade and globalization.

The megastructure found inside the garden works as a model of the city on which it stands- a topography made of architecture. The hard-pressed bricks that make up this urban landscape are made of soil stemming from different regions across the country. A sort of architectural material mapping of a region whose flora, like that of the world, is constantly changing.

As symbols of territory, these bricks represent the building blocks of human settlements. The assembly of these pieces, a metaphor of the topography on which it stands. Architecture that, through its deformation, inevitably returns to the landscape.

This land-form extends under the shadows of an old tree, and one of the most important vegetation and landscape elements of public space across the continent, Platanus hispanica.

This magnificent, deciduous tree that has become a symbol of European urban space. Placed in the center of the installation, the tree marks the beginning of this garden under Napolean rule and the introduction of non-native flora into the city‘s green spaces.

The installation not only maps the territory through a deconstruction of its architecture, but it also acts as a timeline where the vegetation changes undergone by the city of Venice are visible in the form of a faded planting scheme. A synthesis of a history of ecological change and manipulation of land through its vegetation.

An urban landscape gives way to a rugged topography accommodating the seeds of change and giving way to a new type of landscape by reimagining the implicit relationship between landscape and architecture. The spread of vegetation around the world can be seen as a symbol of globalization and a new paradigm in a new ecological sphere marked by the hand of man and led by the expansion of western culture. Learning to live with these plants is part of learning how to live together.