Recently, the Board of the la Biennale di Venezia has appointed Alejandro Aravena as Director of the 15th International Architecture Exhibition (Venice Biennale). On his appointment Alejandro Aravena stated that
“There are several battles that need to be won and several frontiers that need to be expanded in order to improve the quality of the built environment and consequently people’s quality of life……The 15th International Architecture Exhibition will be about focusing and learning from architectures that through intelligence, intuition or both of them at the same time, are able to escape the status quo. We would like to present cases that, despite the difficulties, instead of resignation or bitterness, propose and do something. We would like to show that in the permanent debate about the quality of the built environment, there is not only need but also room for action”.
The question is will we see more landscape architecture at the 2016 Venice Biennale? I am hoping that Aravena looks to landscape architects to provide some voices on the “debate about the quality of the built environment”. After attending the 2014 Biennale – Fundamentals – that was beautifully curated by Rem Koolhaas, however there were few pavilions or exhibits focusing on landscape.
I understand that the 2016 Venice Biennale and all biennales are architecture exhibitions but often landscape architecture and landscape architects are under represented and whilst walking around the 2014 Biennale I felt that one of the most important fundamentals – the landscape – which is the site and context within in architecture is placed was not acknowledged. I hope that Alejandro Aravena heeds my call for more representation of landscape architecture at the 2016 Venice Biennale and allows landscape architects access to curate part or whole exhibitions to be able to participate in the “permanent debate about the quality of the built environment”.
Landscape Architecture is a key part of the design conversation about the quality of the built environment and how we can improve urban and rural life through positive design outcomes. I look forward to visiting the 15th International Architecture Exhibition that will take place from 28 May to 27 November 2016.
Editor – World Landscape Architecture
Schob Nature Preserve Rain Gardens installation from TAMU College of Architecture on Vimeo.
Students install rain gardens at Schob Park Nature Preserve that sustained by stormwater runoff they absorb from nearby impervious surfaces such as walkways and parking lots. The project was funded by a small grant from the Department of Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning.
VIDEO CREDIT | TAMU College of Architecture
Image Credit | Bo Gyllander
In 2011 White arkitekter was winner of the competition for the Forumtorget project in Uppsala. The proposal, with its subdued paving, expressive sofa and generous plateau, is powerful, substantive and empathetic. Here, the people of Uppsala have a natural meeting place and an open breathing space within the built-up business district. The project will be realized in 2016 after the reconstruction of the adjacent building is finished.
Continue reading White arkitekter designs urban sofa for Uppsala
The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum recently announced its 2015-16 Landscape Lectures series. There will be four lectures in the series covering the works of Richard Haag, Walter Hood, Margie Ruddick and Mario Schjetnan. The annual series of engaging and inspirational presentations from leading voices in the field of landscape architecture. Internationally renowned designers present their recent work articulating landscape as a medium of design for the social, cultural, and ecological life of the city.
Continue reading Gardner Museum announces Landscape Lectures
San Diego’s new North Embarcadero waterfront park forms part of a revitalized gateway to the city’s downtown center and establishes an energized destination within a rapidly developing area of the city. The 1000-foot-long linear park adjacent to San Diego Bay is the first phase of a $200 million, 10-phase project which had remained in a conceptual stage for more than 20 years. Denver-based urban design studio Civitas as part of the team of consultants has worked with clients Civic San Diego (formerly known as Centre City Development Corporation), Port of San Diego, and the City of San Diego for the past seven years to bring this first phase of the project to completion. The design team evolved an existing master plan to develop a people-friendly, urban park area and promenade alongside a working waterfront that is home to cruise ships, fishing operations and museums.
Continue reading Civitas creates revitalised waterfront in San Diego