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Landscape as Urbanism in the Americas
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NESS.docs is Lots of Architecture’s monographic series. Each issue features one practice or subject for in-depth analysis: interviews, texts, and a variety of graphic pieces cooperate to unveil singular work that can globally inspire modes of thought about architecture and landscape.

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Lots of Architecture LLC
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in deze editie

1 min.

Lots of Architecture—publishers Over the past quarter century landscape has been claimed as model and medium for the contemporary city. During this time a range of alternative architectural and urban practices have emerged across Latin America. Many of these practices explore the ecological and territorial implications for the urban project.—Charles Waldheim Landscape as Urbanism in the Americas focuses on the potentials for landscape as a medium of urban intervention in the cultural, economic, and ecological contexts of Latin America.…

2 min.
editorial letter

During our first speculations about –NESS.docs, we had already decided that our monographic series would not only feature individual practices but also address topics that we thought deserved visibility, discussion, and reflection. Another relevant fact is that, for a long time, we have devoted a good part of our careers to the promotion and reinforcement of the North-South/South-North network. This issue puts together these intentions and presents a group of very interesting Latin American practices, while feeling like a very organic outcome of the spontaneous dialogues that started with Charles Waldheim and Luis Callejas around seven years ago in a very red and picturesque Cambridge fall. The conversation continued in different cities and formats as we accompanied and witnessed the development of the Landscape as Urbanism in the Americas initiative. Latin America is…

5 min.
a new language

The discourse and practices of landscape urbanism emerged a quarter century ago in Western Europe and North America in relation to two distinct disciplinary shifts. A generation of architects concerned with the city yet critical of the dominant neoconservative and new urbanist practices of the day found in program and event surrogates for urbanity that, in lieu of the masterplan, opted for open-endedness, indeterminacy, and change over time. Simultaneously, a generation of landscape architects trained in regional ecological planning sought to revive their discipline through the curation of ecologies as media of design for the contemporary public realm. These two complementary conditions intersected in the mid-1990s to produce a new object, a new language. (1) While landscape urbanism emerged in a dialogue between architects and landscape architects working in the…

7 min.
landscape as urbanism in latin america

This edition of –NESS.docs represents a new editorial and curatorial avenue for the Landscape as Urbanism in the Americas project, an initiative that has brought together almost one hundred professionals, scholars, and city leaders over the past five years. Until now, the project has been convened primarily as a series of conferences. These have been held in Medellin (2016), Santiago (2016), Brasilia (2016), Mexico City (2017), and Buenos Aires (2018), with the addition of an upcoming sixth conference that will take place at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design (GSD) in March 2020. In addition, the initiative’s digital archive includes a collection of more than sixty featured landscape urbanist projects in Latin America. (1) This multi-series project has been made possible through the collaboration of thirty-eight institutions. It has proceeded…

4 min.
breeding urban ecologies

In his posthumous book “Brief Answers to the Big Questions” (2018), the physicist Stephen Hawking reflects on what he considers the seven most pressing issues for our time. One of them particularly resonates with Greta Thunberg’s generation: “Will we Survive on Earth?” Hawking’s response is crushingly pessimistic in its sci-fi optimism. He counters his belief in humanity’s ability to offset the outcomes of climate change through technological innovation with an utter disbelief in our political capacity to do so, at least in a timely fashion. In an era of denialism and alternative facts, his skepticism is justified. Could Hawking foresee the fires that would ravage Amazonia under the Bolsonaro regime—a government subservient to the bancada ruralista interests in dismantling forest conservation regimes, and expanding ranching and agribusiness frontiers deep into…

2 min.
jardín botánico

MEXICO Culiacan, a city in northwestern Mexico eighty kilometers from the Pacific coast, has a population of more than one million inhabitants. For more than thirty years its botanical garden has been known for its collection of over 750 species of tropical flora. Ernesto Coppel, the president of the board of trustees, began this garden with the intention of improving the city’s quality of life and offering the people of Culiacan new ways of learning through experience: touching, seeing, smelling. Besides its plant variety, this garden is unique in that it functions as a park. Visitors can enjoy various activities such as sports, picnics, or promenades through the landscape. To develop this unique space, Coppel decided to commission a curator and thirty-five renowned artists to make site-specific art that would invite visitors to…