In Portugal, Lara | Sara (Lara Plácido – Architect and Sara Bento Botelho – Sculptor) designed the Natureza em risco. The design was developed by the idea of “Art in the Garden” to interact with the behavior of its visitors, thus creating a drawing of their journey.
… as we walk past it, will grow a “diary” of the garden, superimposing spontaneous and arbitrary records, productively artistic through the action of the wind on the rods with markers attached to their ends which will operate like a wind printer of the intervention of viewers ready to interact with them, thus creating a drawing of their journey.
Lara | Sara
+ Project description courtesy Lara | Sara
Natureza em risco
The challenge is to evoke art in the garden summoning the idea of transformation through the (in)voluntary action of visitors.
We have cultivated a path around a white canvas arranged in an arc (determining the interior/exterior of the area), an area to support the action of various markers (different coloured pencils), that will record experiences within the space.
How? The canvas, as we walk past it, will grow a “diary” of the garden, superimposing spontaneous and arbitrary records, productively artistic through the action of the wind on the rods with markers attached to their ends which will operate like a wind printer of the intervention of viewers ready to interact with them, thus creating a drawing of their journey.
To contemplate the creative process, with each new moment, we considered when the viewer would rest, planting an oval bench in the grass, from which a tree sprouts. This moment in the journey offers aromas, sound and shade which are intended to fertilise senses and help unfold a sense of well-being.
Why an amorphous material for the specific area where the rods are set, when the main objective of this intervention is to create a garden? Why the stone for the place where the steel rods “are born”?
For the sake of irony
After all, artistic creation comes from all the elements grouped in this area, in other words, from the “non living” elements existing in the intervention, which gain life because they display change, the most elementary way of living in the space.
+ Questions about Natureza em risco
What was your criteria while creating Nature by Lines?
Our starting point was the theme “Art in the Garden” defined by the Festival organization. We tried to explore the possibility of having people to intervene on the garden and to have a kind of “diary” of it on space.
Nature attracts spectators but the need to ensure the garden preservation keeps them from touching it or feeling it. Pencils were there to work as extension of their will to intervene, as a privileged manifest of their feelings and thoughts registered on a white canvas.
The title “Nature at risk” reflects an ideological concern of ours, since nature, due to various forms of negligence, is, in fact, at risk. Our intention was to inspire people to become more self-aware of this reality and lead them to write down their thoughts and feelings on the blank canvas.
Can you tell us about the process within the Ponte de Lima Garden Festival? What kind of challenges you face and how was the application process?
We felt very much supported by the organization during the entire working process. On a project like this the main challenge is to get to predict all the things that can go wrong along the period of exhibition, specially in our case where people were called to intervene on the garden. In order to assure its maximum longevity and the preservation of the materials we chose, without loosing track of the original concept, we had to perform a number of tests.
The construction implied different phases. Each element of the garden corresponded to a different one, always supervised by us. It was a creative process that as well as many others was built on concerns and plentiful of joys.
What are the feedbacks you had from Nature by Lines. It seems like people participated intensely and created a unique work there?
The biggest feedback we had was the major affluence of people since day one. Thus making it impossible for us to consider our garden was somehow indifferent or invisible to people. Those daily registers, at some point chaotic, far exceeded our best expectations. People said yes to our invitation and were clearly up for the challenge.
One other thing that was important for us was the positive feedback we got afterwards, with the project divulgation and some publishing proposals of it.
Lastly, how do you generally evaluate the festival?
This Festival is a great example of a good cultural public event. It gets about one hundred thousand visitors every year, therefore contributing to put Ponte de Lima on the cultural scene; and last but not the least it is a sustainable project. It relies on a number of sponsors who recognise the importance of this event and invest on it, getting thereby a most deserved recognition and visibility on a national and international cultural scene plan.
+ For more information, please visit http://jardim-naturezaemrisco.blogspot.com/
+ All images courtesy Lara | Sara