Berlin's natural urban landscape encompasses a variety of spaces that hardly conform to easy classifications. Observing the city through nature offers the opportunity to acknowledge the substantial presence of 'hybrid' urban environments. These are landscapes designed by human and nonhuman geographies that challenge binary paradigms such as natural/artificial, planned/unplanned, public/private. In the context of current urban densification strategies and neoliberal policies, spaces that lie outside the canonical land-use categories play a subordinate role, as lands that are regarded as empty or unproductive. While falling into the common domain of 'marginality', these environments are nowadays an influential field of enquiry for exploring urban social, ecological and cultural entanglements. ‘In-between nature' is a research that deals with areas and social practices that are usually negligible. Based on a reassessment of interdisciplinary literature and on empirical fieldwork, the research employs ‘hybrid urban landscapes' as arenas to grasp the tension between human and natural realms, as well as between the city palimpsest and new design cultures. As part of the lecture, a number of natural urban spaces in Berlin will be presented in order to discuss the value of 'non-ordinary landscapes' within the study and design of the contemporary metropolis.
Elena Ferrari is an urbanist, landscape designer and urban practitioner based in Berlin. She is trained as an architect (Politecnico di Milano) and has focused her work in recent years on urban and landscape design questions. She recently completed her PhD in Urbanism at Iuav University of Venice with a research entitled 'In-between Nature’, which addressed the concept of the hybrid urban landscape in contemporary Berlin. She is interested in the interconnection between human and nature in cities. Currently, her research focus includes marginal urban landscapes, emerging forms of urban gardens and citizen science.
This public lecture is organized by Prof. Sandra Bartoli and Prof. Björn Martenson in occasion of the MA Design Studio “Sant’Erasmo” WS 2022/23
Beginn: 18:30 Uhr
Foto: Elena Ferrari, Poster: Sébastien Millot